NewsLocal News


Douglas County commissioners approve millions in tax relief checks as steep property tax bills come due

The average homeowner will receive a tax relief check of about $190, a county spokesperson told Denver7.
Neighborhood stock
Posted at 8:40 PM, Jan 09, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-09 23:48:27-05

CASTLE ROCK, Colo. — Douglas County commissioners on Tuesday approved nearly $38 million in tax relief for property owners as they voted on the county’s 2024 budget.

The commissioners reduced the county’s mill levies — essentially the tax rates for different county functions— which will lead to refund checks mailed to property owners later this year.

County officials said the budget process has been lengthy this year and attracted extra attention as Colorado has seen historic increases in property values. In Douglas County — one of the hardest hit counties on the Front Range — median home prices climbed 47 percent.

While the increase in property values would have led to a large increase in funds for the county, commissioners said they want to prioritize relief for taxpayers.

“Listen, I trust the people of Douglas County,” said Commissioner George Teal during Tuesday’s meeting. “It’s their money. We have decided that those additional funds are not going to be required to run the county.”

The average homeowner will receive a tax relief check of about $190, a county spokesperson told Denver7. Homeowners who pay their tax bill in full by April can expect to receive the check in May, while homeowners who opt to pay a portion of their bill early this year and the rest by the deadline in June can expect the check in July.

This is the second attempt by Douglas County commissioners to reduce property tax bills for residents. In September, they voted to reduce all residential property values by 4% for taxation purposes, which would have saved homeowners an average of $223. However, the State Board of Equalization struck down the plan in December, citing concerns that the lower values could hurt other taxation districts.

Douglas County commissioners announced at the time their intention to appeal the decision. Commissioner Lora Thomas told Denver7 the board is still weighing the available “legal avenues” but said even a successful appeal would not change tax bills due this year.

“We followed the law. They did not,” Thomas said of the State Board of Equalization. “But no matter what happens, we are stuck with that 4% increase for the property taxes in 2024. We are hoping we can go to court and we can get that fixed so it will impact taxes paid next year.”

Thomas said the mill levy reductions approved Tuesday make the country’s budget “as tight as it can be” while still covering the county’s costs and services.

“We know that our residents are facing huge increases in their property taxes,” she said. “And we have tried to do everything we can as commissioners to lower that.”

Douglas County commissioners approve millions in property tax relief checks

D7 follow up bar 2460x400FINAL.png
The Follow Up
What do you want Denver7 to follow up on? Is there a story, topic or issue you want us to revisit? Let us know with the contact form below.