HOUSE BILL NO. 386
INTRODUCED BY G. HERTZ
AN ACT REVISING THE PROVISIONS FOR SUSPENSION OF DELINQUENT PROPERTY TAXES ON COMMERCIAL PROPERTY; AMENDING SECTION 15-24-1701, MCA; AND PROVIDING AN IMMEDIATE EFFECTIVE DATE.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
"15-24-1701. Suspension and cancellation of collection of certain property taxes on commercial property -- subordination of county tax lien -- local government discretion. (1) The governing body of a county or consolidated local government unit may suspend collection of delinquent property taxes on commercial property to facilitate the purchase and continued operation of a business utilizing the commercial property if the property has not been used in a business for 6 months immediately preceding the date of suspension.
(2) The governing body may refuse to suspend delinquent taxes if it determines that the purchase of the commercial property is not an arm's-length transaction or if the purchase otherwise appears to be a restructuring of ownership for the primary purpose of escaping payment of delinquent property taxes or if the governing body determines the suspension is not in the best interest of the county.
(3) If the purchaser is obtaining financing as a part of a purchase agreement, the purchaser may request and the governing body may grant a subordination of the suspended tax lien to the financing. The request must include an operational plan, levels of employment, and other factors the governing body may consider important in determining if subordination of the county's tax lien position is in the best interest of the people of the county. Subordination does not diminish any other claims of tax lien as established by this section.
(4) If a purchaser of the commercial property continuously utilizes the property in a profit-oriented, employment-stimulating business for 3 years from the date of purchase Upon the request of the purchaser, the governing body may cancel the collection of the suspended delinquent property taxes, in accordance with 15-24-1702, after holding a public hearing and making a determination that canceling the suspended delinquent property taxes is in the best interest of the public. The governing body may not cancel the suspended delinquent property taxes if the purchaser is delinquent on taxes for any other property within the governing body's taxing jurisdiction."
Section 2. Effective date. [This act] is effective on passage and approval.
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Prepared by Montana Legislative Services