Senate Bill No. 550
(By Senator Boley)
[Introduced February 17, 2003; referred to the Committee on
A BILL to amend and reenact section eleven-a, article one-c,
chapter eleven of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine
hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to limiting the
amount of acreage of timberland a person may own to qualify
for identification as managed timberland for property tax
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section eleven-a, article one-c, chapter eleven of the
code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as
amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 1C. FAIR AND EQUITABLE PROPERTY VALUATION.
§11-1C-11a. Certification of managed timberland; assessment of
property; penalty for failure to comply.
(a) Any person who owns timberland comprising ten or more
contiguous acres may qualify for identification as managed timberland for property tax purposes as set forth in subdivision
(1), subsection (d), section ten of this article. Qualification as
managed timberland shall be limited to ownership of no more than
one thousand acres. Acreage of timberland in excess of one
thousand acres owned by any one person shall not qualify as managed
timberland for property tax purposes.
(b) The assessor, upon receipt of an appraisal or
certification of the timberland from the tax commissioner, shall
assess the property as managed timberland beginning with the next
ensuing assessment year. Except as otherwise provided in this
section, the classification of timberland included in a certified
managed timberland plan shall not change for property tax purposes
until such time as there is: (1) A change in the use of the
property which requires a change in classification; (2) a change in
the classification of the property from Class III to Class IV; or
(3) a change in the classification of the property from Class IV to
(c) If the director of the division of forestry determines
that the owner of timberland failed to implement a certified
managed timberland plan within twenty-four months of certifying
that the property meets the definition of managed timberland, the
director shall give written notice to the owner by certified mail,
return receipt requested, that such certification is removed and
the owner of the timberland shall pay to the sheriff of the county in which the property is located a fine equal to the amount of
property taxes saved due to the property being assessed as managed
timberland plus interest calculated at the rate of nine percent per
year. Additionally, the assessor shall reassess the property. The
amount of this fine is equal to the sum of the following
(1) For each assessment year, the county assessor shall
determine the market value of the property and subtract from that
value the value at which the property was appraised as managed
timberland. This amount shall be multiplied by sixty percent.
This result shall then be multiplied by the applicable levy rate.
(2) Interest shall be imposed on the amount calculated under
subdivision (1) of this subsection at the rate of nine percent per
annum beginning with the first day of October of the tax year in
which the taxes should have been paid based upon the timberland
value of the property. Interest shall continue to accrue until the
day the fine is paid.
(d) The sheriff shall deposit and account for the fines
collected under this section in the same manner as property taxes.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to
limit the amount of
acreage of timberland a person may own to qualify for
identification as managed timberland for property tax purposes.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would