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Legislators trim property tax rebates for poor seniors

CARSON CITY — After a partisan debate, state legislators agreed today to cut the average property tax rebate check that poor older residents receive to $300.

Republican members of the Interim Finance Committee had backed trimming the checks, which now average $344, to $271.

That way the Division of Aging Services, which runs the rebate program, could avoid laying off 83 employees and reducing doctor services to senior citizens.

But Democratic members said the senior citizens are very poor and count on the rebate checks. They have been receiving hundreds of calls from older people wondering why they have not yet received them.

“This is not a lot of money,” said Sen. Bernice Mathews, D-Reno. “There are people out there hurting now.”

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