Kupuna Tax Relief

Aloha, You may have seen that we passed Kupuna Tax Relief this week in Council.

Who it helps? Those between 65 years old and 70 years old would get a $90,000 exemption, a new category. Those 70 years old to 75 years old would get a $105,000 exemption, compared to the current $100,000. And those 75 years and older would get $110,000 of their property value exempted.

“I do like it because its broad reaching but it’s also mindful of trying to strike that balance in there,” said Kohala Councilman Tim Richards. “We do need to give some reprieve.”

The bill would cost just $1.2 million annually in a budget that’s now set at $785.9 million, which is $175.8 million, or 28.8% , higher than the current year.

Steve Hunt, former deputy director of the Finance Department who’s now the internal control manager, said increasing exemptions for lower-value property is a less regressive way to provide tax relief to those who most need it.

“Rate relief is regressive,” Hunt said. “Increased exemptions for those that are on the lower spectrum will give the greater benefit.”

Hilo Councilwoman Sue Lee Loy and Hilo Councilman Aaron Chung both supported the measure, but both questioned whether there was a way to provide kupuna discounts based on something other than strictly age.


The Real Property Tax Division (RPT) offers several exemptions; as a homeowner make sure you have filed for any exemption your qualified for to reduce your tax burden. 


Visit hawaiipropertytax.com for details and more information. 

See the Hawaii County Real Property Tax website for more information.


Read the Hilo Tribune Herald article here. 

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