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S.B. 237 Enrolled

             1     

URBAN FARMING AMENDMENTS

             2     
2014 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: J. Stuart Adams

             5     
House Sponsor: Steve Eliason

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill modifies the Urban Farming Assessment Act.
             10      Highlighted Provisions:
             11          This bill:
             12          .    amends the definition of "urban farming" to include certain counties of the second
             13      class;
             14          .    states that land may be assessed on the basis of value that the land has for
             15      agricultural use if, among other things, the land is at least two contiguous acres in
             16      size;
             17          .    states that land that is withdrawn from assessment under the Urban Farming
             18      Assessment Act is subject to a rollback tax for the previous five years; and
             19          .    makes technical changes.
             20      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             21          None
             22      Other Special Clauses:
             23          None
             24      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             25      AMENDS:
             26           59-2-1702 , as enacted by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 197
             27           59-2-1703 , as enacted by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 197
             28           59-2-1705 , as enacted by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 197
             29     


             30      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             31          Section 1. Section 59-2-1702 is amended to read:
             32           59-2-1702. Definitions.
             33          As used in this part:
             34          (1) "Actively devoted to urban farming" means that:
             35          (a) land is devoted to active urban farming activities;
             36          (b) the land produces greater than 50% of the average agricultural production per acre:
             37          (i) as determined under Section 59-2-1703 ; and
             38          (ii) for the given type of land and the given county or area.
             39          (2) "Rollback tax" means the tax imposed under Section 59-2-1705 .
             40          (3) (a) Subject to Subsection (3)(b), "urban farming" means cultivating food:
             41          (i) with a reasonable expectation of profit from the sale of the food; and
             42          (ii) from irrigated land located in a county:
             43          (A) of the first class[.], as defined in Section 17-50-501 ; or
             44          (B) of the second class, as defined in Section 17-50-501 , if the county is at least 98%
             45      urban, as determined by the United States Census Bureau.
             46          (b) "Urban farming" does not include:
             47          (i) cultivating food derived from an animal; or
             48          (ii) grazing.
             49          (4) "Withdrawn from this part" means that land that has been assessed under this part is
             50      no longer assessed under this part or eligible for assessment under this part for any reason
             51      including that:
             52          (a) an owner voluntarily requests that the land be withdrawn from this part;
             53          (b) the land is no longer actively devoted to urban farming;
             54          (c) (i) the land has a change in ownership; and
             55          (ii) (A) the new owner fails to apply for assessment under this part as required by
             56      Section 59-2-1707 ; or
             57          (B) an owner applies for assessment under this part, as required by Section 59-2-1707 ,


             58      but the land does not meet the requirements of this part to be assessed under this part;
             59          (d) (i) the legal description of the land changes; and
             60          (ii) (A) an owner fails to apply for assessment under this part, as required by Section
             61      59-2-1707 ; or
             62          (B) an owner applies for assessment under this part, as required by Section 59-2-1707 ,
             63      but the land does not meet the requirements of this part to be assessed under this part;
             64          (e) the owner of the land fails to file an application as provided in Section 59-2-1707 ;
             65      or
             66          (f) except as provided in Section 59-2-1703 , the land fails to meet a requirement of
             67      Section 59-2-1703 .
             68          Section 2. Section 59-2-1703 is amended to read:
             69           59-2-1703. Qualifications for urban farming assessment.
             70          (1) (a) For general property tax purposes, land may be assessed on the basis of the
             71      value that the land has for agricultural use if the land:
             72          (i) is actively devoted to urban farming;
             73          (ii) is at least two contiguous acres, but less than five acres, in size; and
             74          (iii) has been actively devoted to urban farming for at least two successive years
             75      immediately preceding the tax year for which the land is assessed under this part.
             76          (b) Land that is not actively devoted to urban farming may not be assessed as provided
             77      in Subsection (1)(a), even if the land is part of a parcel that includes land actively devoted to
             78      urban farming.
             79          (2) (a) In determining whether land is actively devoted to urban farming, production
             80      per acre for a given county or area and a given type of land shall be determined by using the
             81      first applicable of the following:
             82          (i) production levels reported in the current publication of Utah Agricultural Statistics;
             83          (ii) current crop budgets developed and published by Utah State University; or
             84          [(iii) other acceptable standards of agricultural production designated by the
             85      commission by rule adopted in accordance with Title 63G, Chapter 3, Utah Administrative


             86      Rulemaking Act, using:]
             87          [(A) information provided annually to the commission by the county assessor in a
             88      county where urban farming occurs; and]
             89          [(B) other information the commission determines is appropriate.]
             90          (iii) the highest per acre value used for land assessed under the Farmland Assessment
             91      Act for the county in which the property is located.
             92          (b) A county assessor may not assess land actively devoted to urban farming on the
             93      basis of the value that the land has for agricultural use under this part unless an owner annually
             94      files documentation with the county assessor:
             95          (i) on a form provided by the county assessor;
             96          (ii) demonstrating to the satisfaction of the county assessor that the land meets the
             97      production levels required under this part; and
             98          (iii) except as provided in Subsection 59-2-1707 (2)(c)(i), no later than January 30 for
             99      each tax year in which the owner applies for assessment under this part.
             100          (3) Notwithstanding Subsection (1)(a)(ii), a county board of equalization may grant a
             101      waiver of the acreage requirements of Subsection (1)(a)(ii):
             102          (a) on appeal by an owner; and
             103          (b) if the owner submits documentation to the county assessor demonstrating to the
             104      satisfaction of the county assessor that:
             105          (i) the failure to meet the acreage requirements of Subsection (1)(a)(ii) arose solely as a
             106      result of an acquisition by a governmental entity by:
             107          (A) eminent domain; or
             108          (B) the threat or imminence of an eminent domain proceeding;
             109          (ii) the land is actively devoted to urban farming; and
             110          (iii) no change occurs in the ownership of the land.
             111          Section 3. Section 59-2-1705 is amended to read:
             112           59-2-1705. Rollback tax -- Penalty -- Computation of tax -- Procedure -- Lien --
             113      Interest -- Notice -- Collection -- Distribution -- Appeal to county board of equalization.


             114          (1) Except as provided in this section or Section 59-2-1710 , land that is withdrawn
             115      from this part is subject to a rollback tax imposed as provided in this section.
             116          (2) (a) An owner shall notify the county assessor that land is withdrawn from this part
             117      within 120 days after the day on which the land is withdrawn from this part.
             118          (b) An owner who fails to notify the county assessor under Subsection (2)(a) that land
             119      is withdrawn from this part is subject to a penalty equal to the greater of:
             120          (i) $10; or
             121          (ii) 2% of the rollback tax due for the last year of the rollback period.
             122          (3) (a) The county assessor shall determine the amount of the rollback tax by
             123      computing the difference for the rollback period described in Subsection (3)(b) between:
             124          (i) the tax paid while the land was assessed under this part; and
             125          (ii) the tax that would have been paid had the property not been assessed under this
             126      part.
             127          (b) For purposes of this section, the rollback period is a time period that:
             128          (i) begins on the later of:
             129          (A) the date the land is first assessed under this part; or
             130          (B) [10] five years preceding the day on which the county assessor mails the notice
             131      required by Subsection (5); and
             132          (ii) ends the day on which the county assessor mails the notice required by Subsection
             133      (5).
             134          (4) (a) The county treasurer shall:
             135          (i) collect the rollback tax; and
             136          (ii) after the rollback tax is paid, certify to the county recorder that the rollback tax lien
             137      on the property has been satisfied by:
             138          (A) preparing a document that certifies that the rollback tax lien on the property has
             139      been satisfied; and
             140          (B) providing the document described in Subsection (4)(a)(ii)(A) to the county recorder
             141      for recording.


             142          (b) The rollback tax collected under this section shall:
             143          (i) be paid into the county treasury; and
             144          (ii) be paid by the county treasurer to the various taxing entities pro rata in accordance
             145      with the property tax levies for the current year.
             146          (5) (a) The county assessor shall mail to an owner of the land that is subject to a
             147      rollback tax a notice that:
             148          (i) the land is withdrawn from this part;
             149          (ii) the land is subject to a rollback tax under this section; and
             150          (iii) the rollback tax is delinquent if the owner of the land does not pay the tax within
             151      30 days after the day on which the county assessor mails the notice.
             152          (b) (i) The rollback tax is due and payable on the day the county assessor mails the
             153      notice required by Subsection (5)(a).
             154          (ii) Subject to Subsection (7), the rollback tax is delinquent if an owner of the land that
             155      is withdrawn from this part does not pay the rollback tax within 30 days after the day on which
             156      the county assessor mails the notice required by Subsection (5)(a).
             157          (6) (a) Subject to Subsection (6)(b), the rollback tax and interest imposed under
             158      Subsection (7) are a lien on the land assessed under this part.
             159          (b) The lien described in Subsection (6)(a) shall:
             160          (i) arise upon the imposition of the rollback tax under this section;
             161          (ii) end on the day on which the rollback tax and interest imposed under Subsection (7)
             162      are paid in full; and
             163          (iii) relate back to the first day of the rollback period described in Subsection (3)(b).
             164          (7) (a) A delinquent rollback tax under this section shall accrue interest:
             165          (i) from the date of delinquency until paid; and
             166          (ii) at the interest rate established under Section 59-2-1331 and in effect on January 1
             167      of the year in which the delinquency occurs.
             168          (b) A rollback tax that is delinquent on September 1 of any year shall be included on
             169      the notice required by Section 59-2-1317 , along with interest calculated on that delinquent


             170      amount through November 30 of the year in which the notice under Section 59-2-1317 is
             171      mailed.
             172          (8) (a) Land that becomes ineligible for assessment under this part only as a result of an
             173      amendment to this part is not subject to the rollback tax if the owner of the land notifies the
             174      county assessor that the land is withdrawn from this part in accordance with Subsection (2).
             175          (b) Land described in Subsection (8)(a) that is withdrawn from this part as a result of
             176      an event other than an amendment to this part, whether voluntary or involuntary, is subject to
             177      the rollback tax.
             178          (9) Except as provided in Section 59-2-1710 , land that becomes exempt from taxation
             179      under Utah Constitution, Article XIII, Section 3, is not subject to the rollback tax if the land
             180      meets the requirements of Section 59-2-1703 to be assessed under this part.
             181          (10) (a) Subject to Subsection (10)(b), an owner of land may appeal to the county
             182      board of equalization:
             183          (i) a decision by a county assessor to withdraw land from assessment under this part; or
             184          (ii) the imposition of a rollback tax under this section.
             185          (b) An owner shall file an appeal under Subsection (10)(a) no later than 45 days after
             186      the day on which the county assessor mails the notice required by Subsection (5).


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