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ACT SUMMARY 2007-2008


ACT NO. 33

(H. 518)

Taxation; technical amendments

This act makes various technical amendments to Vermont tax laws, described below:

Sec. 1. Repeals two provisions.

a. Repeals the requirement to report annually to the Joint Fiscal Office on "downtown" tax credits. A new "tax expenditure report" is now required (by Act 75 of 2005), and since this new report includes all credits against income tax, the specific report for the "downtown" credits is no longer needed. Although the tax expenditure report is biennial, it is more widely distributed.

b. Vermont income tax law allows a deduction for income from a Vermont higher education investment plan. As of 2001, however, federal income tax law excludes this income from the tax base. Since it is no longer in the tax base, the Vermont deduction language is unnecessary, and is repealed by this section.

Sec. 2. Updates a statutory reference to the definition of "school district." This amendment is to a section of law requiring taxpayers to identify their school districts on the income tax return.

Secs. 3, 4. These statutes, enacted in 2006, allow the judiciary to participate in the Debt Setoff Program, whereby a debt owed to a state agency may be set off against a Tax Department refund to which the debtor is otherwise entitled.

In the original Debt Setoff statutes, “refund” is defined to include both income tax refunds and property tax adjustment amounts. The 2006 judiciary addition to the statutes only referenced income tax refunds. This amendment adds the omitted language to the judiciary Debt Setoff provisions, so that courts, as all state agencies, are entitled to set off debts against both income tax refunds and property tax adjustment amounts.

Sec. 4 clarifies that "debts" from the court system includes fines and penalties imposed by the state, but does not include damages awarded when one citizen sues another.

Sec. 4 also corrects a typographical error from the 2006 legislation, changing the word "information" to "setoff."

Sec. 5. Updates a statutory reference to the parcel identification number which must be included on a property tax adjustment claim. The current law refers to a voluntary parcel ID assigned by the town. The new law would refer to the mandatory "SPAN" (school parcel account number).

Secs. 6, 7. Annual update of links to federal income and estate and gift tax laws.

Sec. 8. Corrects a typographical error in a net operating loss law. Subdivision (3) refers to "losses occurring in taxable year 2009." Subdivision (4) then refers to "losses occurring in taxable years 2009 and after"; it should instead say "occurring in taxable years after 2009."

Secs. 9, 10, 11. Conforming changes to Act 185 of 2006. Clarifies that the property tax adjustment calculation uses prior year information for household income, housesite value, and property tax rates, as required by Act 185. Also removes the statutory language which provides that property tax bills will be "assessed without regard to" the property tax adjustment.

Sec. 12. Effective dates

Effective Date: Various

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont