Stateline homeowners, businesses can apply tax relief following - – Rockford’s News Leader

Stateline homeowners, businesses can apply tax relief following severe summer flooding


The July 2017 floods left hundreds of homes and businesses underwater, but now those property owners can apply for a Natural Disaster Income Tax Credit. 

It's a resource that could allow them to get up to $750 back in their 2017 income taxes.

"This is the first time I've seen something like this happen in 30 something years," says Ronald Kane, the Chief County Assessment Officer for Stephenson County.  

To apply, homeowners and small business owners will need to provide any insurance claims, receipts and estimates for any damage from the July 2017 floods along with federal tax forms. Officials say it's a process that can only be done at the assessor's office. 

"They walk out with a certificate or something they would have to file with their income tax return so it's a credit that they've paid to their taxes within the past year," Kane says.  

While the Stephenson County Assessor says he thinks this will provide some relief to residents who felt the impact, he worries the process to make sure those people qualify doesn't go far enough. 

"There really isn't verification on our end. We're not going out to look at what damage was done. What we're looking at is the application that you turned in to determine whether or not you're eligible," Kane says.  

But if you think your home or business does qualify for the extra cash, officials urge you to not wait until the April 15th deadline to apply.

"So if you wait until the last couple of days to file your income tax and want your application, you may have to wait or may end up having to end up having to file an amended return," Kane says. 

Flood victims in Stephenson, Jo Daviess, Ogle and Lee counties could qualify for the tax credit. 

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