The County finds that the preservation of real estate devoted to agricultural, horticultural, forest, and open-space uses within its boundaries is in the public interest. Under this program qualifying land is taxed at its land use value rather than its fair market value. If you have 5 acres of land being farmed, without a house, which has been farmed for 5 years, or 20 acres of forest without a house, you may qualify for the Land Use Program. (To download a copy of the Land Use Guidelines, click here.)
New applications are due December 1. Fees are calculated according to acreage.
If you have delinquent taxes, you will not qualify for the program for the current year. You must have paid your previous taxes by June 1 of the current year.
If you put a plat on record dividing property, a new land use application must be filed for the following year. It is the responsibility of the property owner to notify the Real Estate Assessor's Office to receive new land use applications.
If you sell acreage and the parcel no longer meets the qualifications for land use, or if there is a change to non-qualifying use, a roll back tax will be charged. The roll back is based on the difference between the land use and fair market values of the land and is charged for the current tax year plus the five previous tax years.
Land use applications and revalidation forms are due by December 1 for the upcoming tax year. There is a $10 late fee for forms received after December 1. Forms postmarked or received after January 3rd, 2017 will not be accepted, however new applications may be made up to 30 days from the date the real estate assessment notices are mailed.
For more information on the program, please call 804-722-8629.