OKLAHOMA CITY - Legislation aimed at helping more people construct storm shelters has cleared another hurdle. House Joint Resolution 1001, which was given final approval by the State Senate on Wednesday, would let the voters decide whether to give a property tax exemption to new storm shelters.
Jim Reynolds is the Senate author of the measure. The Oklahoma City Republican hopes it will encourage more people to build safe rooms or other storm shelters.
"I think the 1999 May 3rd tornado is proof of why a safe room or some type of cellar is so important. But many people may be hesitant because they're worried about higher property taxes. This gives us the opportunity to remove that barrier," said Senator Reynolds.
The measure has been sent to the Secretary of State's office so that it can be placed on an election ballot.
The exemption would apply to shelters of up to 100 square feet in size built after January 1, 2002. However once the property is sold, the storm shelter would be included in the next homeowner's property tax assessment.