Bath County Treasurer clarifies questions on personal property taxes

By Bonnie Ralston

An update from the Bath County Treasurer’s office aired recently on Allegheny Mountain Radio and Treasurer Pam Webb wants to clear up some questions that have come up since then on the subject of personal property taxes.

“I just wanted to clarify that items like machinery and tools and office furniture and equipment is only taxable if it is used in a business,” says Webb.  “For individuals, your personal property is basically, you’re only billed for what you have registrations through DMV for.  You are not taxed for your equipment that you have, like lawnmowers or your personal tools or any kind of stuff that you use around your house.  More or less it’s just for your vehicles unless you are running a business or operating a business, then your equipment, your office furniture that does become taxable as personal property.”

There is something new for this year that taxpayers need to know about.  Now mopeds are being taxed as personal property.

“One other change that I just wanted to make people aware of, that effective July 1, 2013, mopeds will become taxable actually this year,” says Webb.  “Because the new law that went into effect last year gave individuals one year to get their mopeds registered with DMV.  At that point in time, this coming year for 2014 mopeds will be taxable as personal property.  This is not a law that was passed by the county but these are laws, state laws, that are set by the Commonwealth of Virginia and they are voted on through the General Assembly.”

Taxpayers need to file Form 762 with the Commissioner of Revenue’s office to declare their personal property by May first of each year.  Your personal property tax is assessed on what you own as of January first of each year.

“I want to clarify that our county ordinance states that personal property shall be deemed to include, but not be limited to the following:  motor vehicles, trailers, mobile homes, boats, airplanes and other forms of aircraft, heavy construction equipment, machinery and office furniture, office equipment in businesses and professions,” says Webb.

And in Bath County farmers are not taxed on livestock or any farm equipment.  Farmers are exempt from personal property taxes on equipment used for their farming operation.

“I want to make people aware that I want to provide this information for real estate and personal property taxes,” says Webb.  “I want to emphasize that this is only information.  There are no changes that the Bath County Treasurer’s office are aware of at this time.  Please know that the real estate and the personal property tax rates are set by the Board of Supervisors, which presently the real estate tax rate is .48 on the hundred and the personal property tax rate is .35 on the hundred.  Assessments are done by the Commissioner of Revenue’s office and the Treasurer’s office is only responsible for the collection of all of these taxes.”

For more information contact the Bath County Treasurer’s office at 839-7256.

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Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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