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HOUSE AMENDMENTS AMENDED - RETURNED TO HOUSE
May 11, 2022
S. Printed 5/11/22--S.
Read the first time March 8, 2022.
TO AMEND SECTION 12-37-220(B)(1)(b) OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO PROPERTY EXEMPTED FROM AD VALOREM TAXATION, TO PROVIDE THAT A QUALIFIED SURVIVING SPOUSE MAY QUALIFY FOR AN EXEMPTION IF THE QUALIFIED SURVIVING SPOUSE OWNS THE HOUSE.
Amend Title To Conform
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 12-37-220(B)(1) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(1)(a) the house owned by an eligible owner in fee or jointly with a spouse;
(b) the house owned by a qualified surviving spouse
acquired from the deceased spouse and a house subsequently acquired by an eligible surviving spouse. The qualified surviving spouse shall inform the Department of Revenue of the address of a subsequent house;
(c) when a trustee holds legal title to a dwelling for a beneficiary and the beneficiary is a person who qualifies otherwise for the exemptions provided in subitems (a) and (b) and the beneficiary uses the dwelling as the beneficiary's domicile, the dwelling is exempt from property taxation in the same amount and manner as dwellings are exempt pursuant to subitems (a) and (b);
(d) The Department of Revenue may require documentation it determines necessary to determine eligibility for the exemption allowed by this item.
(e) A person who owns an interest in a house and meets all other requirements of this item and is otherwise an eligible owner but for the ownership requirement is deemed to be an eligible owner and is eligible for the exemption allowed by this item so long as the county assessor certifies to the Department of Revenue that the house is located on heirs' property and the person is the owner-occupied resident of the house. A person eligible pursuant to this subitem must not claim the special assessment rate allowed pursuant to Section 12-43-220(c) on any other property. For purposes of this item, heirs' property has the same meaning as provided in Section 15-61-320.
(f) As used in this item:
(i) 'eligible owner' means:
(A) a veteran of the armed forces of the United States who is permanently and totally disabled as a result of a service-connected disability and who files with the Department of Revenue a certificate signed by the county service officer certifying this disability;
(B) a former law enforcement officer as further defined in Section 23-23-10, who is permanently and totally disabled as a result of a law enforcement service-connected disability;
(C) a former firefighter, including a volunteer firefighter as further defined in Chapter 80, Title 40, who is permanently and totally disabled as a result of a firefighting service-connected disability;
(ii) 'permanently and totally disabled' means the inability to perform substantial gainful employment by reason of a medically determinable impairment, either physical or mental, that has lasted or is expected to last for a continuous period of twelve months or more or result in death;
(iii) 'qualified surviving spouse' means the surviving spouse of an individual described in subsubitem (i) while remaining unmarried, who resides in the house, and who owns the house in fee or for life. Qualified surviving spouse also means the surviving spouse of a member of the armed forces of the United States who was killed in action, or the surviving spouse of a law enforcement officer or firefighter who died in the line of duty as a law enforcement officer or firefighter, as these terms are further defined in Section 23-23-10 and Chapter 80, Title 40
who at the time of death owned the house in fee or jointly with the now surviving spouse, if the surviving spouse remains unmarried, resides in the house, and has acquired ownership of the house in fee or for life;
(iv) 'house' means a dwelling and the lot on which it is situated classified in the hands of the current owner for property tax purposes pursuant to Section 12-43-220(c). However, for an eligible owner that qualifies pursuant to item (1)(e), 'house' means a dwelling that is eligible to be classified in the hands of the current owner for property tax purposes pursuant to Section 12-43-220(c) except for the ownership requirement."
SECTION 2. A. Section 6-1-300(6) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(6) 'Service or user fee' means a charge required to be paid in return for a particular government service or program
made available to the payer that benefits the payer in some manner different from the members of the general public not paying the fee. 'Service or user fee' also includes 'uniform service charges'. The revenue generated from the fee must:
(a) be used to the benefit of the payers, even if the general public also benefits;
(b) only be used for the specific improvement contemplated;
(c) not exceed the cost of the improvement; and
(d) be uniformly imposed on all payers."
B. Section 6-1-330(A) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(A) A local governing body, by ordinance approved by a positive majority, is authorized to charge and collect a service or user fee. A local governing body must provide public notice of any new service or user fee being considered and the governing body is required to hold a public hearing on any proposed new service or user fee prior to final adoption of any new service or user fee. Public comment must be received by the governing body prior to the final reading of the ordinance to adopt a new service or user fee. A fee adopted or imposed by a local governing body prior to December 31, 1996, remains in force and effect until repealed by the enacting local governing body, notwithstanding the provisions of this
C. Section 6-1-330 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding appropriately lettered new subsections to read:
"( ) A local governing body that repealed a road maintenance fee after June 30, 2021, and subsequently approved a millage increase for road maintenance, must repeal the millage imposed to replace the previous road maintenance fee before reimposing the road maintenance fee.
( ) A local governing body that imposes a user or service fee pursuant to Section 6-1-300(6) must publish the amount of dollars annually collected on each fee on the county's website."
D. Notwithstanding Section 8-21-30, et seq., no public officer shall be personally liable for any amount charged pursuant to SECTION 2.A.
E. This SECTION takes effect upon approval by the Governor and applies retroactively to any service or fee imposed after December 31, 1996.
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
This web page was last updated on May 11, 2022 at 9:58 PM