DENVER (CBS4) – Lawmakers are one step closer to closing a loophole that allows people who aren’t farmers to get agricultural tax breaks.

The bill passed out of the Agriculture Committee on Monday. It’s aimed at eliminating what some jokingly refer to as “rent a cow” — a loophole that allows homeowners on big lots to enjoy big tax breaks by simply housing a farm animal, for example.

Posh Cherry Hills Village and Englewood are among the areas where homeowners have taken advantage of the loophole.

Tax bills that would have been tens of thousands of dollars go down to one or two dollars in some cases.

“There’s a problem when we have someone who lives in a $5 million house and pays less than someone in inner city Denver,” said Rep. Tom Massey, R-Poncha Springs.

“We think there are unintended consequences to our farming community and legitimate farmers may end up getting additional taxes based on this bill,” said Barbara Kirkmeyer, Weld County Commissioner.

Massey’s bill specifically goes after the land under and around a home. It says if that land isn’t integral, in other words, if the homeowner isn’t involved in farming, they no longer get the ag land tax break.
space Lawmakers Close To Closing Ag Tax Break Loophole

Comments (3)
  1. Chris says:

    How nice would it be if the state decided to go after each and every person involved.. Then slapped them bill for past and current taxes owed. Honestly for cheating taxes by the amount they all did… I say make em all pay then slap em all with a little jail time… After all they do it to anybody else caught cheating or lying on their taxes.

  2. Chris says:

    after watching the video and hearing Barbara Kirkmeyer I have to add another comment… Either she is one of these people profiting from this scam or shes afraid to do some work and actually EARN her check.

    Here’s an idea for ya Barbara.. Pass the bill,Then in order to issue someone an agricultural tax certification. Someone from a government office has to show up on the property inspect it, verify that it is in fact a farm. Then the REAL farmers you claim to worry about would be taken care of. I know Colorado’s government has several people on payroll and doing absolutely nothing. Well looks like they all just got a new job title… agricultural inspector.

    TA DA problem solved and I didn’t need a major corporation to funnel millions into my pocket for it.

  3. kent says:

    As a Weld County Commissioner, I’m sure that Barbara Kirkmeyer is representing the interests of her constituency.
    I know Barbara, and she an honest, aggressive, can do public official that knows how to do her job.
    She is not the sort of “gummint drone” that you imagine.

    It’s easy to be a smart ass when you really don’t really know what’s going on, huh?

    BTW – Your idea that an inspector should go on-site is valid.

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