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H.54

Introduced by   Representatives Donaghy of Poultney and Baker of West Rutland

Referred to Committee on

Date:

Subject:  Taxation; property tax; payments in lieu of taxes; appraisal value; agency of natural resources land; state parks, conservation easements; federal grant restrictions

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to clarify the standard to be used by the director of property valuation and review in determining the value of state park lands for purposes of state payments in lieu of taxes.

AN ACT RELATING TO CLARIFICATION OF APPRAISAL STANDARD FOR STATE PARK LANDS

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  LEGISLATIVE INTENT

     It is the intent of the general assembly in this act to ensure that state payments in lieu of taxes (PILOT) are fairly based upon the highest and best use of lands within each municipality, without regard to use restrictions beyond the control of the host municipality, such as restrictions the state may have placed upon the land or that the state may have agreed to under any federal program.  The purpose of the PILOT program is to protect municipalities from property tax loss due to state use or restriction of their otherwise taxable grand list.  In particular, it is the intent of this legislation to ensure that PILOT payments are not reduced simply because the state has accepted federal funds for improvement of state parks and, in return, has agreed to federal restrictions on transfer of the park property.

Sec. 2.  32 V.S.A. § 3708 is amended to read:

§ 3708.  PAYMENTS IN LIEU OF TAXES FOR LANDS HELD BY THE

             AGENCY OF NATURAL RESOURCES

(a)  All ANR land, excluding buildings or other improvements thereon, shall be appraised at fair market value by the director of property valuation and review and listed separately in the grand list of the town in which it is located. Annually the state shall pay to each municipality an amount which is the lesser of:

(1)  one percent of the director’s appraisal of fair market value for the current year for ANR land; or

(2)  one percent of the current year use value of ANR land enrolled by the agency of natural resources in the use value appraisal program under chapter 124 of this title before January 1999; except that no municipality shall receive in any taxable year a state payment in lieu of property taxes for ANR land in an amount less than it received in the fiscal year 1980.

(b)  “ANR land” in this section means lands held by the agency of natural resources.

(c)  “Municipality” in this section means an incorporated city, town, village, or unorganized town, grant, or gore in which a tax is assessed for noneducational purposes.

     (d)  “Fair market value” in this section shall be based upon the value of the land at its highest and best use determined without regard to conservation restrictions, or any other restrictions on development, transfer, or use, imposed as a result of state action or state agreement with any entity other than the host municipality.

     (d)(e)  The selectboard of a town aggrieved by the appraisal of property by the division of property valuation and review under this section may, within 21 days after the receipt by the town listers of notice of the appraisal of its property by the division of property valuation and review, appeal from that appraisal to the superior court of the district in which the property is situated.

Sec. 3.  EFFECTIVE DATE

     This act shall apply to determination of payments in lieu of taxes under chapter 123 of Title 32 to be paid in 2005 and after.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us