Senator Shimabukuro’s Newsletter Sep. 2019

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Senator Shimabukuro’s Newsletter Aug. 2019

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‘The Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate: Summary for Policy Makers’ 9/24/19

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Press Release 25 Sep. 2019. Click image to view the entire release.

Senator Shimabukuro’s Newsletter July 2019

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Senator Shimabukuro’s Newsletter June 2019

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Lower-income homeowners must apply annually for tax credit

Kokua Line: Lower-income homeowners must apply annually for tax credit
By Christine Donnelly, Star-Advertiser, 9/17/19

Question: You had something about a property tax credit for low-income homeowners. I don’t recall the date or details. Must my mom file for this every year, or is it automatic? She has been ill much of the last year, and I am trying to help her with various paperwork.

Answer: Yes, this form must be submitted every year. The deadline is Sept. 30.

You are referring to Oahu’s Real Property Tax Credit for Homeowners, which applies a credit to the following year’s property taxes for lower-income homeowners whose property taxes exceed 3% of their annual income. To be eligible:

>> The combined annual income of all titleholders on the property cannot exceed $60,000.

>> None of the titleholders can own other property, in Hawaii or elsewhere.

>> The property must have a home exemption, which signifies that it is occupied by the owner.

You can download the form at or pick up a hard copy at any satellite city hall or at the city’s Treasury Division (530 S. King St., Room 115) or Tax Relief Section (715 S. King St., Room 505).

Instructions for submitting the application and supporting documents are on the form. Applications postmarked on the due date will be accepted, according to the city Department of Budget and Fiscal Services.

The value of the credit is derived by subtracting the 3% figure from the total property tax owed. So, according to the city’s example, an applicant with total annual titleholder income of $25,000 and a property tax bill of $2,500 could expect a credit of $1,750 applied to the following year’s property taxes. This is because 3% of $25,000 is $750, which is subtracted from the property tax bill of $2,500 to derive the credit amount.

We explain this because we’ve heard from other readers who mistakenly expected the tax credit to equal 3% of their income; the credit varies depending on the applicant’s income and the cost of their property taxes.

You can find more information online at, or call the city’s Real Property Tax Relief Office at 768-3205.

We’ll also note that, unlike this credit, a home exemption, once granted, is automatically applied year after year. Your mom doesn’t have to reapply for that; if she has previously qualified for the low-income property tax credit, the home exemption must already be in place.

Q: Can this get her property taxes down to zero?

A: No, the city says the amount of property taxes owed after applying the tax credit can’t be less than the minimum required property tax, which is $300.

Hawai‘i’s Changing Ocean – Free Presentation on 10/3/19

Please join us for a free public address by internationally acclaimed marine biologist Mark Hixon.

Hawai‘i’s Changing Ocean: Bounty, Threats, Solutions
Thursday, October 3, 2019
6:30 p.m.

The Royal Hawaiian Resort
Regency Ballroom
2259 Kalakaua Ave
Honolulu, HI 96815

The Hsiao Endowed Chair in Marine Biology at UH Mānoa, Mark Hixon was recognized in 2004 as the most cited scientific author on coral-reef ecology in the United States. He is an Aldo Leopold Fellow and Fulbright Senior Scholar and has served as chair of the Ocean Sciences Advisory Committee for the National Science Foundation. His TED talks and TV and radio appearances have covered a variety of ocean issues.

Using stunning visuals, Hixon will summarize the many gifts our ocean provides us, describe human-caused threats to our coastal ecosystems, and review practical solutions he believes Hawai‘i must implement as soon as possible. Many of the dangers we face are global, yet Hixon will emphasize remedies that Hawai‘i can take within our coastal jurisdiction.

Presented by the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and the Hawai‘i Community Foundation

Better Tomorrow Speaker Series, College of Natural Sciences, College of Social Sciences, Conservation International, College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, Resources Legacy Fund, Royal Hawaiian Resort, Scholars Strategy Network, Sierra Club of Hawai‘i, Surfrider Foundation, Sustainable Coastlines, UH Alumni Relations, The Nature Conservancy

The Royal Hawaiian offers validated event parking: $10 self-park and $15 valet. Validation can be received at the event.

Questions? Please email

To be notified about future events in the UH Better Tomorrow Speaker Series, please click here.