Senate Bill No. 195
Introduced By harp, mercer, aklestad, mccann, foster, rose, jore, simpson, peck, dowell, grinde, walters, hayne, mills, mcnutt, smith, ohs, m. hanson, cobb, bookout-reinicke, emerson, barnett, orr, baer, crippen, tash, hertel, nelson, hargrove, bitney, adams, ellis, denny, lawson, mood, sliter, beaudry, depratu, molnar, wiseman, wells, l. taylor, benedict, mohl, stang, lynch, jabs, keating, soft, bankhead, masolo, knox, anderson, rehbein, boharski, keenan, curtiss, bergman, grimes, zook, brainard, hibbard, grady, pavlovich, quilici, mcgee, feland, shea, trexler, devlin, swysgood, beck, mesaros, kottel, burnett, bishop, wilson, thomas, jenkins, sprague, crismore, m. taylor, mahlum, wagner, grosfield
A Bill for an Act entitled: An Act PHASING IN the effect of the current property reappraisal cycle for class three, four, and ten property; ALLOWING AN EXTENSION OF 1997 STATUTORY DEADLINES RELATING TO PROPERTY TAXES; PROVIDING FOR an ADJUSTMENT OF TAX RATES FOR CLASS THREE and FOUR PROPERTY TO COMPENSATE FOR INCREASED VALUATION OF TAXABLE PROPERTY; REVISING THE PROPERTY TAX LIMITATIONS IMPLEMENTING INITIATIVE MEASURE NO. 105 BY CHANGING THE EXCEPTIONS TO THE LIMITATIONS; PROVIDING A METHOD FOR THE VOTERS OF A TAXING UNIT TO AUTHORIZE AN INCREASE IN TAXES; PROVIDING FOR A PROPERTY TAX STUDY COMMITTEE; PROVIDING AN APPROPRIATION FOR THE OPERATION OF THE COMMITTEE; PROVIDING CARRYOVER APPROPRIATION AUTHORITY FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE; amending sections 7-6-2514, 15-6-134, 15-7-102, 15-7-111, 15-10-401, 15-10-402, 15-10-412, 15-36-323, AND 77-1-208, MCA; REPEALING SECTION 15-10-411, MCA; and providing AN IMMEDIATE effective date and a retroactive applicability date.
STATEMENT OF INTENT
A statement of intent is required for this bill because 15-7-111 gives rulemaking authority to the department of revenue for phasing in newly constructed, remodeled, and reclassified property consistent with the phasing in of reappraised property. The legislature contemplates that the rules adopted by the department should address, at a minimum, the manner in which the reappraised portion of new, remodeled, or reclassified property will be determined and phased in.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
Section 1. Section 7-6-2514, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-6-2514. Tax limitation applicable. The property tax limitation
to 1986 levels under contained in Title 15, chapter 10,
part 4, applies to the county public safety levy authorized in 7-6-2513. The limitation is determined by the total tax levied
for the county general fund. The first year that a county public safety tax is levied, the public safety levy and the general
fund levy may not exceed the prior year's county general fund levy. In subsequent years, any increases in the public safety
levy and the general fund levy are limited under Title 15, chapter 10, part 4."
Section 2. Section 15-6-134, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-6-134. Class four property -- description -- taxable percentage. (1) Class four property includes:
(a) all land, except that specifically included in another class;
(b) all improvements, including trailers or mobile homes used as a residence, except those specifically included in another class;
(c) the first $100,000 or less of the market value of any improvement on real property, including trailers or mobile homes, and appurtenant land not exceeding 5 acres owned or under contract for deed and actually occupied for at least 7 months a year as the primary residential dwelling of any person whose total income from all sources, including net business income and otherwise tax-exempt income of all types but not including social security income paid directly to a nursing home, is not more than $15,000 for a single person or $20,000 for a married couple or a head of household, as adjusted according to subsection (2)(b)(ii). For the purposes of this subsection (1)(c), net business income is gross income less ordinary operating expenses but before deducting depreciation or depletion allowance, or both.
(d) all golf courses, including land and improvements actually and necessarily used for that purpose, that consist of at least nine holes and not less than 3,000 lineal yards; and
(e) all improvements on land that is eligible for valuation, assessment, and taxation as agricultural land under 15-7-202, including 1 acre of real property beneath improvements on land described in 15-6-133(1)(c). The 1 acre must be valued at market value.
(2) Class four property is taxed as follows:
(a) (i) Except as provided in 15-24-1402 or 15-24-1501 and subsection (2)(a)(ii) of this section, property described in subsections (1)(a), (1)(b), and (1)(e) of this section is taxed at 3.86% of its market value.
(ii) The taxable percentage rate in subsection (2)(a)(i) must be adjusted downward by subtracting 0.022 percentage points each year until the tax rate is equal to or less than 2.78%.
(b) (i) Property qualifying under the property tax assistance program in subsection (1)(c) is taxed at
3.86% the rate
provided in subsection (2)(a)(ii) of its market value multiplied by a percentage figure based on income and determined
from the following table:
Income Income Percentage
Single Person Married Couple Multiplier
Head of Household
$ 0 - $ 6,000 $ 0 -$ 8,000 20%
6,001 - 9,200 8,001 - 14,000 50%
9,201 - 15,000 14,001 - 20,000 70%
(ii) The income levels contained in the table in subsection (2)(b)(i) must be adjusted for inflation annually by the department of revenue. The adjustment to the income levels is determined by:
(A) multiplying the appropriate dollar amount from the table in subsection (2)(b)(i) by the ratio of the PCE for the second quarter of the year prior to the year of application to the PCE for the second quarter of 1995; and
(B) rounding the product thus obtained to the nearest whole dollar amount.
(iii) "PCE" means the implicit price deflator for personal consumption expenditures as published quarterly in the Survey of Current Business by the bureau of economic analysis of the U.S. department of commerce.
(c) Property described in subsection (1)(d) is taxed at one-half the taxable percentage rate established in subsection (2)(a)(i).
(3) Within the meaning of comparable property, as defined in 15-1-101, property assessed as commercial property is comparable only to other property assessed as commercial property and property assessed as other than commercial property is comparable only to other property assessed as other than commercial property."
Section 3. Section 15-7-102, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-7-102. Notice of classification and appraisal to owners -- appeals. (1) (a) The department shall mail to each owner or purchaser under contract for deed a notice of the classification of the land owned or being purchased and the appraisal of the improvements on the land only if one or more of the following changes pertaining to the land or improvements have been made since the last notice:
(i) change in ownership;
(ii) change in classification;
(iii) except as provided in subsection (1)(b), change in valuation; or
(iv) addition or subtraction of personal property affixed to the land.
(b) After the first year, the department is not required to mail the notice provided for in subsection (1)(a)(iii) if the change in valuation is the result of an incremental change in valuation caused by the phasing in of a reappraisal.
(b)(c) The notice must include the following for the taxpayer's informational purposes:
(i) the total amount of mills levied against the property in the prior year;
(ii) the amount of the prior year's taxes resulting from levied mills; (iii) an estimate of the current year's taxes based on the prior year's mills; and (iv)(ii) a statement that the notice is not a tax bill. (c)(d) Any misinformation provided in the information required by subsection (1)(b) (1)(c) does not affect the validity of
the notice and may not be used as a basis for a challenge of the legality of the notice.
(2) (a) The department shall assign each assessment to the correct owner or purchaser under contract for deed and mail the notice of classification and appraisal on a standardized form, adopted by the department, containing sufficient information in a comprehensible manner designed to fully inform the taxpayer as to the classification and appraisal of the property and of changes over the prior tax year.
(b) The notice must advise the taxpayer that in order to be eligible for a refund of taxes from an appeal of the classification or appraisal, the taxpayer is required to pay the taxes under protest as provided in 15-1-402.
(3) If the owner of any land and improvements is dissatisfied with the appraisal as it reflects the market value of the property as determined by the department or with the classification of the land or improvements, the owner may request an assessment review by submitting an objection in writing to the department, on forms provided by the department for that purpose, within 30 days after receiving the notice of classification and appraisal from the department. The review must be conducted informally and is not subject to the contested case procedures of the Montana Administrative Procedure Act. As a part of the review, the department may consider the actual selling price of the property, independent appraisals of the property, and other relevant information presented by the taxpayer in support of the taxpayer's opinion as to the market value of the property. The department shall give reasonable notice to the taxpayer of the time and place of the review. After the review, the department shall determine the correct appraisal and classification of the land or improvements and notify the taxpayer of its determination. In the notification, the department shall state its reasons for revising the classification or appraisal. When the proper appraisal and classification have been determined, the land must be classified and the improvements appraised in the manner ordered by the department.
(4) Whether a review as provided in subsection (3) is held or not, the department may not adjust an appraisal or classification upon the taxpayer's objection unless:
(a) the taxpayer has submitted an objection in writing; and
(b) the department has stated its reason in writing for making the adjustment.
(5) A taxpayer's written objection to a classification or appraisal and the department's notification to the taxpayer of its determination and the reason for that determination are public records. The department shall make the records available for inspection during regular office hours.
(6) If any property owner feels aggrieved by the classification or appraisal made by the department after the review provided for in subsection (3), the property owner has the right to first appeal to the county tax appeal board and then to the state tax appeal board, whose findings are final subject to the right of review in the courts. The appeal to the county tax appeal board must be filed within 30 days after notice of the department's determination is mailed to the taxpayer. A county tax appeal board or the state tax appeal board may consider the actual selling price of the property, independent appraisals of the property, and other relevant information presented by the taxpayer as evidence of the market value of the property. If the county tax appeal board or the state tax appeal board determines that an adjustment should be made, the department shall adjust the base value of the property in accordance with the board's order."
Section 4. Section 15-7-111, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-7-111. Periodic revaluation of certain taxable property. (1) The department of revenue shall administer and
supervise a program for the revaluation of all taxable property within
the state classes three, four, and ten. All other
property must be revalued annually. The department shall complete this revaluation program by of class three, four, and ten
property is complete on December 31, 1996. A comprehensive written reappraisal plan must be promulgated by the
department. The reappraisal plan adopted must provide that all property in each county be revalued by December 31, 1996.
The department shall furnish a copy of the plan and all amendments to the plan to the board of county commissioners of
each county. The amount of the change in valuation from the 1996 base year for each property in classes three, four, and
ten must be phased in each year at the rate of 2% of the total change in valuation.
(2) The department shall value and phase in the value of newly constructed, remodeled, or reclassified property in a manner consistent with the valuation within the same class and the values established pursuant to subsection (1). The department shall adopt rules for determining the assessed valuation and phased-in value of new, remodeled, or reclassified property within the same class.
(2)(3) Beginning January 1, 1997 2007, the department of revenue shall administer and supervise a program for the
revaluation of all taxable property within the state at least every 3 years classes three, four, and ten. A comprehensive
written reappraisal plan must be promulgated by the department. The reappraisal plan adopted must provide that all class
three, four, and ten property in each county be is revalued at least every by January 1, 2010, and each succeeding 3 years.
The department shall furnish a copy of the plan and all amendments to the plan to the board of county commissioners of
Section 5. Section 15-10-401, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-10-401. Declaration of policy. (1) The state of Montana's reliance on the taxation of property to support education
and local government has placed an unreasonable burden on the owners of all classes
three, four, six, nine, twelve, and
fourteen of property , as those classes are defined described in Title 15, chapter 6, part 1. (2) The legislature's failure to give local governments and local school districts the flexibility to develop alternative
sources of revenue will only lead to increases in the tax burden on the already overburdened property taxpayer. (3) The legislature is the appropriate forum to make the difficult and complex decisions to develop: (a) a tax system that is fair to property taxpayers; and (b) a method of providing adequate funding for local government and education. (4) The legislature has failed in its responsibility to taxpayers, education, and local government to relieve the tax burden on
property classes three, four, six, nine, twelve, and fourteen. (5)(2) The Except as provided in 15-10-412, the people of the state of Montana declare that it is the policy of the state of
Montana that no further property tax increases be imposed on property classes three, four, six, nine, twelve, and fourteen. In
order to reduce volatility in property taxation and in order to reduce taxpayer uncertainty, it is the policy of the legislature
to develop alternatives to market value for purposes of taxation."
Section 6. Section 15-10-402, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-10-402. Property tax limited to
1986 1996 levels. (1) Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3) 15-10-412, the
amount of taxes levied on property described in 15-6-133, 15-6-134, and 15-6-136 Title 15, chapter 6, part 1, may not, for
any taxing jurisdiction, exceed the amount levied for taxable tax year 1986 1996. (2) The limitation contained in subsection (1) does not apply to levies for rural improvement districts, Title 7, chapter 12,
part 21; special improvement districts, Title 7, chapter 12, part 41; elementary and high school districts, Title 20; juvenile
detention programs authorized under 7-6-502; or bonded indebtedness. (3) New construction or improvements to or deletions from property described in subsection (1) are subject to taxation at
1986 levels. (4) As used in this section, the "amount of taxes levied" and the "amount levied" mean the actual dollar amount of taxes
imposed on an individual piece of property, notwithstanding an increase or decrease in value due to inflation, reappraisal,
adjustments in the percentage multiplier used to convert appraised value to taxable value, changes in the number of mills
levied, or increase or decrease in the value of a mill."
Section 7. Section 15-10-412, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-10-412. Property tax
limited to 1986 levels limit -- clarification -- extension to all property classes exception.
Section 15-10-402 is interpreted and clarified implemented as follows:
The limitation to 1986 levels is extended to apply to all classes of property described in Title 15, chapter 6, part 1. (2) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied is interpreted to mean means that, except as otherwise provided in this
section, the actual tax liability for an individual property total amount of taxes levied by each taxing unit is capped at the
dollar amount due levied in each taxing unit for the 1986 1996 tax year . In tax years thereafter, the property must be taxed
in each taxing unit at the 1986 cap or the product of the taxable value and mills levied, whichever is less for each taxing
unit, except in a taxing unit that levied a tax in tax years 1983 1993 through 1985 1995 but did not levy a tax in 1986 1996,
in which case the actual tax liability for an individual property is taxes levied are capped at the dollar amount due in that
taxing unit for the 1985 1995 tax year. (3)(2) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not prohibit a further an increase in the total taxable valuation of
taxes levied by a taxing unit as a result of:
(a) annexation of real property and improvements into a taxing unit;
(b) construction, expansion, or remodeling of improvements;
(c) transfer of property into a taxing unit;
(d) subdivision of real property;
(e) reclassification of property;
(f) increases in the amount of production or the value of production for property described in 15-6-131 or 15-6-132;
(g) transfer of property from tax-exempt to taxable status; or
(h) revaluations caused by
: (i) cyclical reappraisal; or (ii) expansion, addition, replacement, or remodeling of improvements.
(3) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not prohibit an increase in the total taxes levied by a taxing unit in order to compensate the taxing unit for any loss in the total amount of nonlevy revenue received in 1996 from taxes imposed under Title 15, chapter 23, part 7, and Title 15, chapter 36, part 3.
(4) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not prohibit a further increase in the taxable valuation or in the actual
tax liability on individual property in each class as a result of: (a) a revaluation caused by: (i) construction, expansion, replacement, or remodeling of improvements that adds value to the property; or (ii) cyclical reappraisal; (b) transfer of property into a taxing unit; (c) reclassification of property; (d) increases in the amount of production or the value of production for property described in 15-6-131 or 15-6-132; (e) annexation of the individual property into a new taxing unit; or (f) conversion of the individual property from tax-exempt to taxable status. (5) Property in class four is valued according to the procedures used in 1986, including the designation of 1982 as the base
year, until the reappraisal cycle beginning January 1, 1986, is completed and new valuations are placed on the tax rolls and
a new base year designated, if the property is: (a) new construction; (b) expanded, deleted, replaced, or remodeled improvements; (c) annexed property; or (d) property converted from tax-exempt to taxable status. (6) Property described in subsections (5)(a) through (5)(d) that is not class four property is valued according to the
procedures used in 1986 but is also subject to the dollar cap in each taxing unit based on 1986 mills levied. (7)(4) The limitation on the amount of taxes, as clarified in this section, is intended to leave the property appraisal and
valuation methodology methodologies of the department of revenue intact. Determinations of county classifications,
salaries of local government officers, and all other matters in which total taxable valuation is an integral component are not
affected by 15-10-401 and 15-10-402 except for the use of taxable valuation in fixing tax levies. In fixing tax levies, the
taxing units of local government may anticipate the deficiency in revenues resulting from the tax limitations in 15-10-401
and 15-10-402, while understanding that regardless of the amount of mills levied, a taxpayer's liability may not exceed the
dollar amount due in each taxing unit for the 1986 tax year unless:.
except as provided in subsection (8)(a), the taxing unit's taxable valuation decreases by 5% or more from the 1986
tax year. If Except as provided in subsection (5)(d), if a taxing unit's taxable valuation decreases by 5% or more from the
1986 1996 tax year, it may levy additional mills to compensate for the decreased taxable valuation, but the mills levied may
not exceed a number calculated to equal the revenue from property taxes for the 1986 1996 tax year in that taxing unit.
(b) If a levy authorized under Title 20 raised less revenue in
1986 1996 than was raised in either 1984 1994 or 1985 1995,
in which case the taxing unit may, after approval by the voters in the taxing unit, raise each year thereafter an additional
number of mills but may not levy more revenue than the 3-year average of revenue raised for that purpose during 1984
1994, 1985 1995, and 1986 1996 ;.
(c) If a levy authorized in 50-2-111 that was made in
1986 1996 was for less than the number of mills levied in either 1984
1994 or 1985 1995, in which case the taxing unit may, after approval by the voters in the taxing unit, levy each year
thereafter an additional number of mills but may not levy more than the 3-year average number of mills levied for that
purpose during 1984 1994, 1985 1995, and 1986 1996.
(d) If a taxing unit's taxable valuation decreases by more than 5% in any year, it may levy additional mills by following either procedure provided for in subsection (7)(a).
(8) (a) Except as provided in subsection (8)(b), if a taxing unit has levied additional mills under subsection (7)(a) to
compensate for a decrease in taxable valuation, it may continue to levy additional mills to equal the revenue from property
taxes for the 1986 tax year when the taxing unit's taxable valuation is greater than 95% but less than 100% of the taxing
unit's taxable valuation in tax year 1986. (b) When the taxable valuation of a taxing unit that levied additional mills under subsection (7)(a) or (8)(a) is equal to or
greater than the taxing unit's taxable valuation in tax year 1986, it may not levy additional mills to compensate for a
subsequent decrease in taxable valuation unless the conditions of subsection (7)(a) are satisfied. (9)(6) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not apply to the following levy or special assessment categories,
whether or not they are based on commitments made before or after approval of 15-10-401 and 15-10-402:
(a) rural improvement districts;
(b) special improvement districts;
(c) levies pledged for the repayment of bonded indebtedness, including tax increment bonds;
(d) city street maintenance districts;
(e) tax increment financing districts;
(f) satisfaction of judgments against a taxing unit;
(g) street lighting assessments;
(h) revolving funds to support any categories specified in this subsection
(i) levies for economic development authorized pursuant to 90-5-112(4);
(j) levies authorized under 7-6-502 for juvenile detention programs;
(k) levies authorized under 76-15-531 and 76-15-532 for conservation district special administrative assessments;
(l) elementary and high school districts; and
(m) voted poor fund levies authorized under 53-2-322.
(10)(7) (a) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not apply in a taxing unit if the voters in the taxing unit
approve an increase in tax liability:
(i) following a resolution of the governing body of the taxing unit containing:
(a)(A) a finding that there are insufficient funds to adequately operate the taxing unit as a result of 15-10-401 and
15-10-402; (b)(B) an explanation of the nature of the financial emergency; (c)(C) an estimate of the amount of funding shortfall expected by the taxing unit; (d)(D) a statement that applicable fund balances are or by the end of the fiscal year will be depleted; (e)(E) a finding that there are no alternative sources of revenue; (f)(F) a summary of the alternatives that the governing body of the taxing unit has considered; and (g)(G) a statement of the need for the increased revenue and how it will be used .; or
(ii) by a vote pursuant to this subsection (7)(a)(ii). The approval or rejection of a levy that does not follow the procedure in subsection (7)(a)(i) is decided in the following manner:
(A) determine the total number of qualified electors of the taxing unit from the list of electors supplied by the county registrar for the election;
(B) determine the total number of qualified electors who voted at the taxing unit election from the tally sheets for the election; and
(C) calculate the percentage of qualified electors voting at the election by dividing the number determined in subsection (7)(a)(ii)(A) by the number determined in subsection (7)(a)(ii)(B).
(b) When the calculated percentage in subsection (7)(a)(ii)(C) is 40% or more, the levy is considered to have been approved and adopted if a majority of the votes are cast in favor of the proposition, otherwise it is considered to have been rejected.
(c) The election provisions of this section do not apply to school levy elections.
(11)(8) (a) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not apply to levies required to address the funding of relief of
suffering of inhabitants caused by famine, conflagration, or other public calamity.
(b) The limitation set forth in this chapter on the amount of taxes levied does not apply to levies to support:
(i) a city-county board of health as provided in Title 50, chapter 2, if the governing bodies of the taxing units served by the board of health determine, after a public hearing, that public health programs require funds to ensure the public health. A levy for the support of a local board of health may not exceed the 5-mill limit established in 50-2-111.
(ii) county, city, or town ambulance services authorized by a vote of the electorate under 7-34-102(2); and
(iii) a rail authority, as provided in Title 7, chapter 14, part 16, authorized by a board of county commissioners. A levy for the support of a rail authority may not exceed the 6-mill limit established in 7-14-1632.
(12)(9) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied by a taxing jurisdiction subject to a statutory maximum mill levy does
not prevent a taxing jurisdiction from increasing its number of mills beyond the statutory maximum mill levy to produce
revenue equal to its 1986 1996 revenue. (13)(10) The limitation on the amount of taxes levied does not apply to a levy increase to repay taxes paid under protest in
accordance with 15-1-402. (14)(11) A taxing jurisdiction that included special improvement district revolving fund levies in the limitation on the
amount of taxes levied prior to April 22, 1993, may continue to include the amount of the levies within the dollar amount
due in each taxing unit for the 1986 tax year even if the necessity for the revolving fund has diminished and the levy
authority has been transferred."
Section 8. Section 15-36-323, MCA, is amended to read:
"15-36-323. Calculation of unit value. For the purposes of distribution of oil and natural gas production taxes to county and school taxing units for production from pre-1985 wells, the department shall determine the unit value of oil and natural gas for each taxing unit as follows:
(1) Subject to the conditions of subsection (3), the unit value for oil for each taxing unit is the quotient obtained by dividing the net proceeds taxes calculated on oil produced and sold in that taxing unit in calendar year 1988 by the number of barrels of oil produced in that taxing unit during 1988, excluding post-1985 wells.
(2) Subject to the conditions of subsection (3), the unit value for natural gas is the quotient obtained by dividing the net proceeds taxes calculated on natural gas produced and sold in that taxing unit in calendar year 1988 by the number of cubic feet of natural gas produced in that taxing unit during 1988, excluding post-1985 wells.
(3) The amount of net proceeds taxes calculated under subsections (1) and (2) may not include the amount of taxes that are
attributable to a
financial emergency voted levy, as described in 15-10-412 (10)(7), for which additional mills were levied in
fiscal year 1990."
Section 9. Section 77-1-208, MCA, is amended to read:
"77-1-208. Cabin site licenses and leases -- method of establishing value. (1) The board shall set the annual fee based on full market value for each cabin site and for each licensee or lessee who at any time wishes to continue or assign the license or lease. The fee must attain full market value based on appraisal of the cabin site value as determined by the department of revenue. The licensee or lessee has the option to pay the entire fee on March 1 or to divide the fee into two equal payments due March 1 and September 1. The value may be increased or decreased as a result of the statewide periodic revaluation of property pursuant to 15-7-111 without any adjustments as a result of phasing in values. An appeal of a cabin site value determined by the department of revenue must be conducted pursuant to Title 15, chapter 2.
(2) The board shall set the fee of each initial cabin site license or lease or each current cabin site license or lease of a person who does not choose to retain the license or lease. The initial fee must be based upon a system of competitive bidding. The fee for a person who wishes to retain that license or lease must be determined under the method provided for in subsection (1).
(3) The board shall follow the procedures set forth in 77-6-302 through 77-6-306 for the disposal or valuation of any fixtures or improvements placed upon the property by the then-current licensee or lessee and shall require the subsequent licensee or lessee whose bid is accepted by the board to purchase those fixtures or improvements in the manner required by the board."
Section 10. Property tax committee. (1) There is an interim property tax committee. The committee consists of 12 members. The speaker of the house shall appoint six house members, three from each party, and the senate committee on committees shall appoint six senate members, three from each party.
(2) The committee may study all aspects of the state property tax system and shall prepare a menu of alternatives to revise, reform, or replace the property tax system. The alternatives should include methods that remove volatility from the valuation of property. The alternative methods should include options designed to supplement or replace the current valuation system in order to prevent the exclusive reliance on market value.
(3) In order to provide a wide-ranging series of options for consideration, each individual member of the committee may pursue proposals independently and receive staff assistance on the proposals. The committee may discuss and make suggestions on all proposals. A vote of one-fourth of the members may include a proposal on the menu of alternatives. The menu of alternatives must be presented to the 56th legislature.
(4) The committee may solicit the advice of appropriate persons and entities as the committee considers necessary.
(5) The legislative branch shall provide staff support to the committee. The committee may contract for services as the committee considers necessary.
Section 11. Extension of 1997 deadlines relating to property taxation. As a result of the change in the phasein of reappraisal for class three, four, and ten property enacted by the 55th legislature, it is not possible to comply with certain statutory deadlines relating to appraisals, assessments, reimbursements, budgets, and collection of property taxes. The state appraisal and assessment process will be delayed, which in turn will cause delays for the tax appeal boards and local government taxing jurisdiction budgeting and collection processes. Therefore, for tax year 1997, all deadlines are extended as necessary and reasonable, except the time limits allowed for filing an appeal remain the same as provided by law in order to allow for the orderly and efficient assessment and collection of taxes.
Section 12. Appropriation. There is appropriated from the general fund to the legislative branch $100,000 for the biennium for operating expenses and personnel services for operations of the property tax committee established in [section 10].
Section 13. Appropriation carryover. Notwithstanding the provisions of 17-7-304, the department of revenue may carry over into the fiscal year commencing July 1, 1997, up to $425,000 of the unexpended portion of the appropriation to the department for the biennium ending June 30, 1997.
Section 14. Repealer. Section 15-10-411, MCA, is repealed.
Section 15. Effective date -- retroactive applicability. [This act] is effective on passage and approval, and [sections 1 through 9] apply retroactively, within the meaning of 1-2-109, to property tax years beginning after December 31, 1996.