GOP tries pushing property tax relief for disabled veterans

From Oregon Senate Republicans

Democrats vote down the proposal

SALEM, Ore. – In an attempt to help disabled veterans and their families with the cost of housing, today Senate Republicans attempted to force a vote on Senate Bill 348, a bill that would give disabled veterans property tax relief.

In 2019, a large bipartisan group of 26 Senators sponsored SB 500, a bill that would have enacted the same framework to reduce veterans’ property taxes. The bill passed unanimously out of the Senate, where it died in the House of Representatives.

“The Senate has previously shown our commitment to making housing more affordable for veterans,” Senator Chuck Thomsen (R-Hood River), who made the motion to withdraw the bill from committee on the Senate floor, said. “More bold action is needed to get this policy across the finish line. I was proud to have supported this bill.”

According to a recent report, Oregon is the worst state in America to live in for retired veterans. That includes being tied for 47th worst in the country for homelessness among veterans and 47th worst in housing affordability.

“We must find creative ways to get down the cost of housing for everyone, but especially veterans,” Senate Republican Leader Fred Girod (R-Lyons) said. “The Senate had an opportunity to recognize the sacrifices that veterans make for our freedom in a very tangible way today. I am disappointed Democrats turned down that opportunity.”

Democrats voted in lockstep to defeat the move. The bill will remain in the Finance and Revenue committee, where thus far it has not been scheduled for a public hearing by the Democrat committee chair.