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Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
Sponsors: Senators Elliott and Reese
Document Path: l:\council\bills\ggs\22699htc03.doc
Introduced in the Senate on January 14, 2003
Introduced in the House on February 26, 2003
Last Amended on April 27, 2004
Currently residing in the Senate Committee on Finance
Summary: Motor vehicle property taxes, credit or refund for lessee when vehicle is traded or returned
HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS
Date Body Action Description with journal page number ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 12/4/2002 Senate Prefiled 12/4/2002 Senate Referred to Committee on Finance 1/14/2003 Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-39 1/14/2003 Senate Referred to Committee on Finance SJ-39 2/19/2003 Senate Committee report: Favorable Finance SJ-15 2/20/2003 Senate Read second time SJ-13 2/20/2003 Senate Ordered to third reading with notice of amendments SJ-13 2/25/2003 Senate Read third time and sent to House SJ-21 2/26/2003 House Introduced and read first time HJ-9 2/26/2003 House Referred to Committee on Ways and Means HJ-9 4/22/2004 House Committee report: Favorable with amendment Ways and Means HJ-16 4/26/2004 Scrivener's error corrected 4/27/2004 House Amended HJ-68 4/27/2004 House Read second time HJ-72 4/28/2004 House Read third time and returned to Senate with amendments HJ-15 4/29/2004 Senate Recommitted to Committee on Finance SJ-4
View the latest legislative information at the LPITS web site
VERSIONS OF THIS BILL
Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
April 27, 2004
S. Printed 4/27/04--H.
Read the first time February 26, 2003.
TO AMEND SECTION 12-37-2725, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE CANCELLATION OF A MOTOR VEHICLE LICENSE PLATE AND REGISTRATION FOR A REFUND OR CREDIT OF PROPERTY TAXES PAID ON THE VEHICLE TO ANOTHER, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE LESSEE OF A MOTOR VEHICLE WHO ASSIGNS THE LEASE OR SURRENDERS THE LEASED VEHICLE TO THE LESSOR IS ELIGIBLE FOR A CREDIT OR REFUND ON PROPERTY TAXES PAID IF THE TERMS OF THE LEASE MADE THE LESSEE PRIMARILY LIABLE FOR THE PROPERTY TAX AND THE LESSEE IN FACT PAID THE TAX.
Amend Title To Conform
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 12-37-2725 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 12-37-2725. When (a) the title to a licensed vehicle is transferred, or, (b) the owner of the vehicle becomes a legal resident of another state and registers the vehicle in the new state of residence, or, (c) the lessee of a licensed vehicle assigns the lease or surrenders the leased vehicle to the lessor and under the terms of the lease the lessee was primarily liable for property taxes on the vehicle and the lessee in fact paid these taxes, the license plate and registration certificate may be returned for cancellation. The license plate and registration certificate must be delivered to the auditor of the county of the vehicle's registration and tax payment. A request for cancellation must be made in writing to the auditor upon forms approved by the Department of Public Safety. The auditor, upon receipt of the license plate, registration certificate, and the request for cancellation, shall order and the treasurer shall issue a credit or refund of property taxes paid
by the transferor on the vehicle. The amount of the refund or credit is that proportion of the tax paid that is equal to that proportion of the complete months remaining in that tax year. The auditor, within five days thereafter, shall deliver the license plate, registration certificate, and the written request for cancellation to the Department of Public Safety. Upon receipt, the Department of Public Safety shall cancel the license plate and registration certificate and may not reissue the same."
SECTION 2. A. Article 3, Chapter 37, Title 12 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 12-37-223. (A) For purposes of this section, real property means real property classified for property tax purposes pursuant to Section 12-43-220.
(B) There is exempted from property tax an amount of fair market value of real property located in the county sufficient to eliminate any valuation increase attributable to a countywide appraisal and equalization program conducted pursuant to Section 12-43-217. An exemption allowed by this section does not apply to:
(1) value attributable to property or improvements not previously taxed, such as new construction, and for renovation of existing structures;
(2) real property transferred after the year in which the most recent countywide equalization program was implemented pursuant to Section 12-43-217; and
(3) real property valued for property tax purposes by the unit evaluation method.
(C)(1) Notwithstanding subsection (B)(2), the exemption provided in subsection (B) applies to property which has been transferred in fee simple in a transfer that is not subject to income tax pursuant to Sections 102, limited to transfer to a spouse or surviving spouse, (Gifts and Inheritances), 1033 (Conversions--Fire and Insurance Proceeds to Rebuild), 1041 (Transfers of Property Between Spouses or Incident to Divorce), 351 (Transfer to a Corporation Controlled by Transferor), 355 (Distribution by a Controlled Corporation), 368 (Corporate Reorganizations), 721 (Nonrecognition of Gain or Loss on a Contribution to a Partnership) of the Internal Revenue Code as defined in Section 12-6-40; and to distributions of real property out of corporations, partnerships, or limited liability companies to persons who initially contributed the property to the corporation, partnership, or limited liability company.
(2) Notwithstanding Subsection (B)(2), and in addition to the nondisqualifying transfers allowed pursuant to item (1) of this subsection, the transfer of any interest in real property to a spouse, whether inter vivos, testamentary, or by operation of law, is a nondisqualifying transfer, and the exemption allowed pursuant to Subsection (B) continues to apply to the interest transferred.
(D) Once the taxable value of a property is reduced because of the exemption provided in subsection (B), that reduced value remains in effect, except as otherwise provided in subsection (B)(2), until the implementation of the next equalization and reassessment program. The effect of this exemption is, that upon the implementation of each subsequent equalization and reassessment program, the value of the property as determined under Section 12-37-930, reduced by the amount of any exemption granted under this section, may not increase except in the year following a disqualifying transfer in ownership.
When a property is transferred such that the property is no longer eligible for the exemption provided for in subsection (B), the property is subject to being taxed in the tax year following the transfer at its value, as determined under Section 12-37-930, at market value based on the sale or transfer of ownership or at the appraised value determined by the county assessor.
(E) The closing attorney involved in a real estate transfer shall provide the following notice to the buyer(s):
THE INTEREST IN REAL PROPERTY TRANSFERRED AS A RESULT OF THIS TRANSACTION MAY BE SUBJECT TO PROPERTY TAXATION DURING THE NEXT TAX YEAR AT A VALUE THAT REFLECTS ITS FAIR MARKET VALUE.
(F) To qualify for the exemption authorized under subsection (B), the owner of the property for which the exemption is sought or the owner's agent must apply to the county assessor where the property is located and establish eligibility for the exemption. The time period for making application for the exemption provided for in subsection (B), or for seeking a refund of taxes paid as a result of a subsequent determination of eligibility for the exemption, is the same as provided for in Section 12-43-220(c) for administering the special legal residence assessment ratio, mutatis mutandis.
Under penalty of perjury, the taxpayer must certify that the property meets the qualifications established in subsection (B) for eligibility for the exemption and provide such other proof required by the county assessor. The burden is on the taxpayer to establish eligibility for the exemption. The Department of Revenue shall assist the applicant and the assessor to the extent practicable in providing information necessary or helpful in determining eligibility. If the assessor determines the applicant ineligible, the value of the property must be determined by the assessor.
No further application is necessary from the owner who qualified the property for the exemption while the property continues to meet the eligibility requirements. If a change in ownership occurs, the owner who had qualified for the exemption shall notify the assessor within six months of the transfer of title. Another application is required by the new owner if the new owner seeks to qualify for the exemption provided by this section.
If a person signs the certification, obtains the exemption, and is, thereafter, found not eligible, a penalty may be imposed equal to one hundred percent of the tax paid, plus interest on that amount at a rate of one-half of one percent a month, but in no case less than thirty dollars nor more than the current year's taxes assessed on the value of the property without regard to the exemption."
B. Section 12-37-223A. of the 1976 Code, is repealed for property tax years beginning after 2003.
C. Article 1, Chapter 37, title 12 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 12-37-130. The Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President Pro Tempore of the Senate shall appoint, by January 14, 2014, a task force to study the effects of this chapter on homeowners and the real estate industry and recommend changes to this chapter, and shall report its findings to the General Assembly no later than January 13, 2015."
D. Section 6-1-320(A) of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 114 of 1999, is further amended to read:
"(A) Notwithstanding Section 12-37-251(E), a local governing body may increase the millage rate imposed for general operating purposes above the rate imposed for such purposes for the preceding tax year only to the extent of the increase
in the consumer price index for the in the average of the twelve monthly consumer price indexes for the most recent twelve-month period consisting of January through December of the preceding calendar year. However, in the year in which a reassessment program is implemented, the rollback millage, as calculated pursuant to Section 12-37-251(E), must be used in lieu of the previous year's millage rate."
E. Notwithstanding the general effective date of this act, this section takes effect upon approval of this act by the Governor and applies for countywide reassessment values implemented after 2003. Amounts exempted pursuant to the former provisions of Section 12-37-223(A) are deemed to have been exempted pursuant to Section 12-37-223 of the 1976 Code, as added by this section.
SECTION 3. This act takes effect on the first day of the first month following approval by the Governor.
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