Richmond to vote on tax break for disabled vets

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Hollie Hinton can't bear to see the injuries suffered by soldiers overseas.

"They're over there. They're getting hurt; getting killed, getting crippled. Some of them lost their leg, arm. Some of them lost their sight," he said.

Hinton had a heart attack serving in Japan. He's 85-years-old and one of the few remaining veterans of World War Two.

"Not very many left and, ah, I don't think I'm going to be around here too much longer," said Hinton.

Hinton hopes the Richmond City Council will soon pass a tax exemption, created by the state to give veterans, deemed 100% disabled, an exemption from their real estate taxes.

"These people gave everything they had for our country and I think it is only right that we give them benefits and in a way thanks for the service that they have done for this country," said City Council President Kathy Graziano.

The tax break would be on properties up to one acre, and would even apply to widows of disabled vets as long as they don't move or remarry.

"The money I get from them and the few dollars I get from social security. It takes everything I got," Hinton added.

Hinton pays more than a $1000 a year for his house. He says that extra money could go a long way for him, and many others who've served their country.

"I hope somebody in my condition from the service that served their time. I hope when they come out they can get a tax break," he said.

This proposed ordinance will be voted on by the full city council in a few weeks. Now, if it is passed, it will be retroactive, meaning payments made as of January 1, 2011 would be refunded to qualified vets.

The exemption is estimated to cost the city about $75,000 a year. The city is accepting applications now. You can call the assessor's office at 646-7094 for more information.

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