Land Use program
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
In 1971, the Virginia General Assembly enacted a law permitting localities to adopt a program of special assessments for agricultural, horticultural, forest, and open space lands.
The purpose of the program is stated as:
The Land Use Program is a state program, adopted by county ordinance, which provides for the assessment of land based on use value rather than fair market value. The tax reduction is a deferral, not a discount. The tax reduction must be repaid with simple interest if the use of the land changes which is known as a rollback tax. The requirements for qualification and use values are established by the State Land Evaluation Advisory Council.
In order to qualify, land should have been in production for five (5) years prior to entering the program and must be in one of the following use categories. Any excess acreage that does not qualify will be assessed at fair market value.
Applications must be received by November 1st to qualify for land use for the next taxable year
There is a $10.00 filing fee for the first parcel and $0.50 for each additional parcel. Applications will not be accepted if there are any delinquent taxes on the property.
Rollback taxes are assessed for the current year and the five (5) preceding years, in which the real estate was valued, assessed and taxed under the land use ordinance. The taxes are assessed when the property no longer conforms to the Standards for Classification of the Land Use Program. The taxes, plus simple interest, are calculated on the difference in assessment between the fair market value and the use value (known as the deferred value). The person who changes the use of the property will receive the rollback tax bill. Examples of change in use could include: (1) rezoning, (2) selling a non-qualifying acreage, or (3) land no longer being in production.