AN ACT TO INCENTIVIZE BEGINNING FARMING OPERATIONS BY BROADENING WHICH AGRICULTURAL LANDS QUALIFY FOR THE PRESENT-USE VALUE PROPERTY TAX BENEFIT.
Amends GS 105-277.3, which establishes qualifications for agricultural and horticultural lands for the present-use value property tax benefit. Current law qualifies agricultural land used as a farm for aquatic specifies, and all other agricultural land that consists of at least 10 acres that are in actual production, which meets specified income requirements. Additionally, current law qualifies horticultural land consisting of one or more tracts, one of which consists of at least five acres that are in actual production, which meets specified income requirements.
Modifies the specified income requirements as follows. Now requires new applicants for qualification of agricultural or horticultural land for present-use value assessment or applicants for any review of the property's qualification for present-use value assessment that occurs before the property has been assessed at present-value for three years, to show that the property either (1) for the year preceding January 1 of the year for which the benefit is claimed, produced a gross income of at least $1,000, or (2) for the three years preceding January 1 of the year in which the benefit is claimed, produced an average gross income of at least $1,000 (current law only allows for satisfaction of the income requirement by the average gross income over the three preceding years calculation). Requires that, for any review of the eligibility of agricultural or horticultural land for present-use value assessment under GS 105-296(j) (annual review by the county assessor of certain parcels) that occurs after the land has been taxed at its present-use value for three years, the owner must show that the property has produced an average gross income of at least $1,000 for the preceding three years in order to meet the income requirement. Combines the definition of gross income for both classifications.
Additionally, amends the ownership requirements of the land to allow for the land to come within the agricultural or horticultural classification if the land is owned by the following, for the year preceding rather than the four years preceding the January 1 of the year for which the benefit is claimed: (1) by the individual or the individual's relative; (2) by a business entity, a member of the business entity, or another business entity whose members include a member of the business entity that owns the land; or (3) by a trust.
Applies for taxable years beginning on or after July 1, 2019.