Waivers and refunds apply only to residential buildings damaged by the wildfires.

Maui residents whose buildings were “completely destroyed” by the wildfires that swept through Lahaina, Upcountry and Kihei last week won’t have to pay property taxes for fiscal year 2023-2024, the county said Thursday.

The waivers apply to commercial and residential buildings that were not vacant land prior to the disaster and have a record on mauipropertytax.com under “Improvement Information” or “commercial improvement information,” according to a press release.

Owners who have already paid property taxes and have a building meeting the waiver criteria should expect a refund by Oct. 31. The Maui Department of Finance is assembling the list of eligible properties, it said.

The fires that began Aug. 8 killed at least 111 people, with hundreds more still unaccounted for.

A map from the Federal Emergency Management Agency showed that over 1,700 buildings in the Lahaina area had been destroyed.

Some experts have said that the county could face property tax losses as high as $50 million if it waives and refunds taxes for all buildings in affected areas. Along the historic Front Street area, a Civil Beat analysis found $11 million in exposed property tax revenue for the county.

Property values are composed of the value of the building and the land. Buildings that were not destroyed stand to lose value because of the devastation and potential contamination in the surrounding area.

The mayor’s office did not respond to questions about when new assessments will happen for buildings that were not completely destroyed by the fires.

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