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Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Court: Caldwell’s Property Tax Scheme Illegal
By News Release @ 10:17 PM :: 6354 Views :: Honolulu County, Taxes

Caldwell Wrong on Taxes – Again

News Release from, October 19, 2016

Honolulu, HI - Mayor Kirk Caldwell created the Residential A tax classification to charge higher taxes on homes valued at $1 mil. or more.  Charles Djou opposes this Caldwell money grab and a court has now ruled against Caldwell in favor of Djou's position.

"Caldwell's universal solution for all of his administration's mismanagement from rail to homelessness is to just grab more and more money from the people," stated Djou.  "The court ruling against Caldwell's Residential A tax class money grab just reaffirms what we already know - the mayor simply doesn't care about the law or the people.  Nothing will change unless we elect new leadership at Honolulu Hale.  I support eliminating the unconstitutional Caldwell Residential A tax class and working toward simplifying the real property tax code."

In 2003, Djou worked with then-Mayor Jeremy Harris on a sweeping tax reform plan that dramatically simplified the City's real property tax code.  Since the enactment of Djou's reforms, however, the City property tax code has become increasingly complex and is again in need of simplification and reform.


Charles Djou is running for Mayor of Honolulu. He represented Hawaii's 1st Congressional District in the U.S. House and previously served on the Honolulu City Council and Hawaii State House.  Djou is an Army Reservist and Afghanistan war veteran.  He is married to Stacey Kawasaki Djou and together they have three children.

Oct 15, 2016: Djou: Cut Property Taxes, Eliminate ‘Residential A’

  *   *   *   *   *

Residential A Property Tax Classification Ruled Unconstitutional

News Release from Chun Kerr LLP

Honolulu, Hawaii, October 18, 2016 - Honolulu law firm Chun Kerr LLP is pleased to announce that Tax Appeal Court Judge Gary W.B. Chang ruled in favor of Residential A property tax owners yesterday, holding that the Residential A tax classification is illegal and unconstitutional.

Concerned property owners earlier this year appealed their 2016-2017 real property tax assessments on their Residential A property tax classification. Yesterday's ruling calls into question whether the County is able to collect taxes for properties under this classification.

With this ruling, the County will now be required to address the status of approximately 8,700 owners of Residential A properties being taxed at the higher $6 rate per $t,000 of assessed value instead of the lower $3.50 rate per S1,000 of assessed value for standard Residential properties. The County may need to consider reclassifying these properties back to Residential and issue revised assessment notices.

Of immediate concern is the status of February's property tax installment, and whether the County will be refunding tax payments already made by these owners. This may also prompt the County Council to consider amending the ordinance that established the Residential A classification.

"The Residential A classification was enacted in 2013 to set up a significantly higher tax rate of 56 per S1,000 of assessed value for owners of residences valued at S1 m¡ll¡on or more without a homeowners exemption," said Ray K. Kamikawa, Partner, Chun Kerr LLP. "The 56 rate operates as a cliff, not graduated, imposing significant tax burdens on local property owners as well as nonresidents."


About Chun Kerr LLP Founded in 1970, Chun Kerr LLP is an award-winning Honolulu-based law firm specializing in real estate, finance, business transactions and taxation. Chun Kerr's attorneys have been widely recognized for their expertise in local, national and international legal issues. For more, visit

Big Q: Do you agree with a court’s rejection of the Residential A property tax category?


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