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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann Romney, have sought property tax relief for a California property they purchased for $12 million in 2008, according to a Los Angeles Times report.

Details about the Romneys’ San Diego real estate market home emerge as the presumptive GOP nominee and his staff continue to battle critics on both sides of the aisle who insist Romney release more income tax returns.

According to the Times report, the Romneys fought for a tax bill that their attorneys thought more suitably reflected the drop in La Jolla, CA real estate values since the couple purchased the home.

Initially, the Romneys asked that their 2009 assessment, $12.24 million, be reduced to $6.8 million, maintaining that their home had lost about 45 percent of its value in the first seven months they owned it.

Thirteen months later, after hiring an attorney to guide them, the Romneys filed an amended appeal, contending the home had suffered a less-dramatic fall of 27.3 percent, to $8.9 million.

They also filed an appeal for the 2010 tax year, claiming the house had dropped further, to $7.5 million, 38.7 percent less than the home’s assessed value.

As a result, the Romneys have saved about $109,000 in property taxes over four years.”

Zillow reported last year the Romneys intend to demolish the waterfront property and build a new home in its place.

Romney filed an application with the city to bulldoze his 3,009-square-foot, single-story home and replace it with a larger, two-story home. The California Coastal Commission and La Jolla Community Planning Group have seen the application and have recommended approval, but a campaign official told Politico that the project won’t get started until Romney’s presidential campaign is finished. According to the same campaign official, Romney has applied for the expansion because the La Jolla home isn’t big enough for the family:

They want to enlarge their 2-bedroom home because with five married sons and 16 grandchildren it is inadequate for their needs.”

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About the Author

Laura Vecsey is a former sports columnist, news reporter and politics writer and has worked for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Baltimore Sun, Albany (N.Y.) Times-Union and Harrisburg Patriot-News. She was also a regional editor with Examiner.com. She is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College.

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