Kauai fails to stop
The county must start
implementing a residential
rate cut approved by voters
LIHUE » Kauai County's lawsuit to block implementation of a property tax rollback that was approved by the voters in November remains alive after a court hearing yesterday.
Circuit Judge George Masuoka rejected Kauai County's request for a temporary injunction. That means the county must start taking steps to implement the tax cut.
Masuoka also threw out a motion to dismiss, filed by organizers of the move to place the issue on the ballot last year.
The judge said he would rule within three weeks on the county's motion for summary judgment to declare the tax in violation of both the state Constitution and Kauai County Charter.
Kauai County has opposed the tax cut, which rolls back tax bills on residential property to 1999 levels and allows an increase of only 2 percent annually after that.
Because of Kauai's housing boom and the accompanying increase in taxable property values, property tax collections since 1999 have increased 50 percent.
Kauai voters passed the tax rollback in November by a vote of 13,082 to 8,354.