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WEST VIRGINIA CODE
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WVC 11 - 8 - 6 E §11-8-6e. Effect on regular levy rate when appraisal results in tax increase; public hearings.
(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, where any annual appraisal, triennial appraisal or general valuation of property would produce an assessment that would cause an increase of one percent or more in the total projected property tax revenues that would be realized were the then current regular levy rates by the county commission and the municipalities to be imposed, the rate of levy shall be reduced proportionately as between the county commission and the municipalities and for all classes of property for the forthcoming tax year so as to cause such rate of levy to produce no more than one hundred one percent of the previous year's projected property tax revenues from extending the county commission and municipality levy rates, unless there has been compliance with subsection (c) of this section.

An additional appraisal or valuation due to new construction or improvements to existing real property, including beginning recovery of natural resources, and newly acquired personal property shall not be an annual appraisal or general valuation within the meaning of this section, nor shall the assessed value of such improvements be included in calculating the new tax levy for purposes of this section. Special levies shall not be included in the reduced levy calculation set forth in subsection (b) of this section.

(b) The reduced rates of levy shall be calculated in the following manner:

(1) The total assessed value of each class of property as it is defined by section five, article eight of this chapter for the assessment period just concluded shall be reduced by deducting the total assessed value of newly created properties not assessed in the previous year's tax book for each class of property;

(2) The resulting net assessed value of Class I property shall be multiplied by .01; the value of Class II by .02; and the values of Class III and IV, each by .04;

(3) Total the current year's property tax revenue resulting from regular levies for each county commission and municipality and multiply the resulting sum by one hundred one percent: Provided, That the one hundred one percent figure shall be increased by the amount the county's or municipality's increased levy provided for in subsection (b), section eight, article one-c of this chapter;

(4) Divide the total regular levy tax revenues, thus increased in subdivision (3) of this subsection, by the total weighted net assessed value as calculated in subdivision (2) of this subsection and multiply the resulting product by one hundred; the resulting number is the Class I regular levy rate, stated as cents-per-one hundred dollars of assessed value;

(5) The Class II rate is two times the Class I rate; Classes III and IV, four times the Class I rate as calculated in the preceding subdivision.

(c) The governing body of a county or municipality may, after conducting a public hearing, which may be held at the same time and place as the annual budget hearing, increase the rate above the reduced rate required in this section if any such increase is deemed to be necessary by such governing body: Provided, That in no event shall the governing body of a county or municipality increase the rate above the reduced rate required by subsection (b) of this section for any single year in a manner which would cause total property tax revenues accruing to the governing body of the county or municipality, excepting additional revenue attributable to assessed valuations of newly created properties not assessed in the previous year's tax book for each class of property, to exceed by more than ten percent those property tax revenues received by the governing body of the county or municipality for the next preceding year: Provided, however, That this provision shall not restrict the ability of a county or municipality to enact excess levies as authorized under existing statutory or constitutional provisions: Provided further, That this provision does not restrict the ability of a county or municipality to issue bonds and enact sufficient levies to pay for such bonds pursuant to article one, chapter thirteen of this code when such issuance has been approved by an election administered pursuant to that article.

Notice of the public hearing and the meeting in which the levy rate shall be on the agenda shall be given at least seven days before the date for each public hearing by the publication of a notice in at least one newspaper of general circulation in such county or municipality: Provided, That a Class IV town or village as defined in section two, article one, chapter eight of this code, in lieu of the publication notice required by this subsection, may post no less than four notices of each public hearing, which posted notices shall contain the information required by the publication notice and which shall be in available, visible locations including the town hall. The notice shall be at least the size of one-eighth page of a standard size newspaper or one-fourth page of a tabloid-size newspaper and the headline in the advertisement shall be in a type no smaller than twenty-four point. The publication notice shall be placed outside that portion, if any, of the newspaper reserved for legal notices and classified advertisements and shall also be published as a Class II-O legal advertisement in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code. The publication area is the county. The notice shall be in the following form and contain the following information, in addition to such other information as the local governing body may elect to include:

NOTICE OF PROPOSED TAX INCREASE.

The (name of the county or municipality) proposes to increase property tax levies.

1. Appraisal/Assessment Increase: Total assessed value of property, excluding additional assessments due to new or improved property, exceeds last year's total assessed value of property by ..... percent.

2. Lowered Rate Necessary to Offset Increased Assessment: The tax rate which would levy the same amount of property tax as last year, when multiplied by the new total assessed value of property with the exclusions mentioned above, would be $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class I property, $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class II property, $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class III and $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class IV property. These rates will be known as the "lowered tax rates".

3. Effective Rate Increase: The (name of the county or municipality) proposes to adopt a tax rate of $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class I property, $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class II property, $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class III property and $..... per $100 of assessed value for Class IV property. The difference between the lowered tax rates and the proposed rates would be $..... per $100, or ..... percent for Class I; $..... per $100, or ..... percent for Class II; $..... per $100, or ..... percent for Class III and $..... per $100, or ..... percent for Class IV. These differences will be known as the "effective tax rate increases".

Individual property taxes may, however, increase at a percentage greater than or less than the above percentage.

4. Revenue produced last year: $.....

5. Revenue projected under the effective rate increases: $.....

6. Revenue projected from new property or improvements: $.....

7. General areas in which new revenue is to be allocated: A public hearing on the increases will be held on (date and time) at (meeting place). A decision regarding the rate increase will be made on (date and time) at (meeting place).

(d) All hearings are open to the public. The governing body shall permit persons desiring to be heard an opportunity to present oral testimony within such reasonable time limits as are determined by the governing body.

(e) This section shall be effective as to any regular levy rate imposed by the county commission or a municipality for taxes due and payable on or after July 1, 1991. If any provision of this section is held invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of this section which can be given effect without the invalid provision or its application and to this end the provisions of this section are declared to be severable.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2014 1st Special Session
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