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March 30, 2022

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Idaho Governor Vetoes Bill That Sought to Improve Self-Storage Property-Tax Assessment

Idaho Gov. Brad Little has vetoed Senate Bill 1301 (SB 1301), which would have changed the way property taxes are calculated for self-storage properties. Supported by the Idaho Self Storage Association (ISSA), the legislation would have mandated that county assessors use a cost approach in determining taxable value. In his objection, Little indicated he was uncomfortable applying a different standard to self-storage assessments than other commercial property types.

As written, SB 1301 would have allowed assessors to determine property value by using “one or more market valuation methods, provided that the market value shall not exceed reproduction or replacement cost of the improvements, less depreciation, plus land value for the real property.”

Little likened the bill to performing surgery “on a wound that may only require a Band-Aid.” In his veto message, he wrote: “Self-storage properties are inherently difficult to assess; however, I am disinclined to require county assessors to cap self-storage assessments using just the cost approach when no other commercial property type would be to the same standard. I am concerned this may open a Pandora’s Box of other types of commercial properties seeking similar treatment.”

Introduced in February, the bill passed the senate on March 11 with a 22-12 vote, which is less than the two-thirds margin required to overturn a veto. The bill passed the house 55-15 on March 17.

During a March 3 hearing by the senate’s Local Government and Taxation Committee, three representatives from the ISSA spoke in favor of the bill. Two people, including a representative of the Idaho Association of Assessors, spoke against it.

The ISSA is a nonprofit committed to strengthening and enhancing the self-storage industry in Idaho through education, networking opportunities and lobbying efforts.

Sources:
Idaho Press, Governor Issues Third Veto, on Bill on Self-Storage Businesses' Property Taxes
Idaho Legislature, Senate Bill 1301

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