AGENDA REQUEST

Sponsor:

Board of Supervisors Meeting Date: 

Larry Weeks , Scott District Supervisor

April,15, 2002

Staff Lead:

Department: 

Ross W. D'Urso

Commissioner of the Revenue

Topic:  A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE SCHEDULING OF A PUBLIC HEARING ON A PROPOSED ORDINANCE AMENDING ARTICLE II CHAPTER 8 OF THE CODE OF FAUQUIER COUNTY TO REVISE SECTION 8-3 (EXEMPTION FOR ELDERLY AND DISABLED) TO PROVIDE FOR INCREASED FINANCIAL LIMITATIONS FOR QUALIFICATION FOR RELIEF FROM REAL PROPERTY TAX

 

Topic Description:

Title 58.1-3211, Code of Virginia, provides enabling legislation that permits exemption and/or deferrals of real property tax levied by a locality for qualified citizens age sixty-five (65) or older and persons declared totally disabled.  Certain limitations are set out for use statewide.  It also provides that certain localities, including Fauquier, may have higher than standard limitations. 

The current law provides that Fauquier County may exempt or defer the real property tax for those elderly or disabled persons whose income does not exceed $52,000 and a maximum net combined financial worth, which shall exclude the value of the dwelling and the land, not exceeding one acre upon which it is situated, of $195,000. 

The current limitations established by the Board of Supervisors are $35,000 gross income and $125,000 net worth.  The Relief for the Elderly Ordinance was last amended July 21, 1992 to reflect those amounts. 

An analysis of the program participation indicates that there has been a decline in participation, due largely to the eligibility requirements. 

Year     Participants       Property Value Exempted

1992          484            $38,944,000

1993          573            $46,108,706

1994          578            $49,298,800

1995          607            $53,017,300

1996          629            $55,324,100

1997          628            $58,112,250

1998          698            $59,051,066

1999          607            $56,880,000

2000          611            $54,792,550

2001          547            $50,273,200

2002          545            $61,366,900 

 

PROPOSAL "A" 

Since the limitation amounts have not been adjusted since 1992, it is proposed that a revised set of limits be established, adjusted for the general cost of living since 1992.  Using an average three percent (3%) per annum increase in the cost of living applied to both existing amounts, allows an increase from $35,000 to $47,000 for the gross income amount and an increase from $125,000 to $168,000 for the combined net worth.  In addition, Delegate Mark Cole (88th District) sponsored a bill that was adopted by the Legislature that increased the amount a relative living in the household may earn from $6,500 to $8,500.  It is proposed that this be incorporated into this ordinance amendment.  The change should provide an opportunity for those participants who were previously in the program to be eligible again. 

Limits                           Current Proposed

Gross Income               $35,000             $47,000

Net Worth                  $125,000           $168,000

Relative Income              $6,500               $8,500

 

PROPOSAL "B" 

In order to offset the fiscal impact of the increased limitations while expanding the eligibility for senior citizens and alternative sliding scale may be employed.  The proposed sliding scale increases the lower end of the exemption and decreases the exemption at an increased higher amount.  the table is as follows: 

Gross Income               Amount of Tax Relief

$42,000 or less                          100%

$42,001 to $47,000                     50%

$47,001 to $52,000                     25%

 

Increasing the Net Worth limit from $125,000 to $150,000

Relative income: Increase from $6,500 to $8,500 

Proposal "B" is expected to produce about the same revenue impact as Proposal "A"

Requested Action of the Board of Supervisors: 

Consider adoption of the attached resolution.

Financial Impacts Analysis:

FISCAL IMPACT 

PROPOSAL "A" 

          Participation       Exempted Tax   *

Current        545           $607,532

Estimated    650           $724,581

 

PROPOSAL "B" 

        Participation         Exempted Tax

Current       545              $619,805

Estimated   750              $766,384

*   $0.99 tax rate 

In preparing the FY 2003 Budget, an allowance in the revenue estimate was included to account for the proposed change in limitations; therefore, there is no additional impact to the County Administratorís proposed budget.  In order to implement these changes, the attached ordinance amendment needs to be slated and set for public hearing.

Identify any other Departments, Organizations or Individuals that would be affected by this request:

County Attorney for ordinance review .