eNews February 8, 2018 – ACTION ALERTThursday, February 08, 2018 - 09:33am
Call delegates before noon on three measures
Please call your delegate this morning, before noon, to oppose three bills: HB1258 (Kilgore), HB1427 (Kilgore) and HB1204 (Hugo). These bills are on the House floor at the noon session today.
HB1258 strips local control over the installation and operation of wireless infrastructure.
Talking points for HB1258:
- Eliminates most local control over the installation and operation of new wireless structures by classifying most new wireless structure projects as “Administrative Review-Eligible Projects.” (Some projects would be classified as “Standard Process Projects.”)
- Treats the wireless industry differently from all other private profit-making industries, thus leaving localities (and the state) open to charges of discrimination against other industries.
- Moves the decision-making process about land use from the community, its citizens and elected officials to for-profit companies who care about their bottom line, not about citizens’ welfare and desires.
HB1427 sets statewide rights-of-way fees.
Talking points for HB1427:
- Statewide fees are not likely to be in tune with actual costs.
- Statewide fees do not account for the differences in the cost and availability of professional services throughout the state, as well as the differences in workload in local jurisdictions.
- There is no rationale for the preferential treatment for one industry.
VML contact: Michelle Gowdy, email@example.com
HB1204 upends local assessment process
HB1204 (Hugo) requires local assessing officials to provide for use value assessment of real estate dedicated to open-space. Currently, localities may adopt an ordinance to provide for use value assessment and taxation of real estate devoted to agricultural, horticultural, forest, or open-space use.
HB1204 upends this decades-old policy by mandating the special assessment treatment even if the local government has not adopted an authorizing ordinance.
The bill’s supporters note that HB1204 is narrowly drawn to target just a handful of localities. In fact, the measure was submitted to benefit two privately-owned golf courses that are appealing their assessments from one locality.
- The bill overturns long-standing state policy recognizing that these local assessment decisions rest with localities.
- The state will not make up for lost tax dollars.
- The state already has a process to appeal assessments. Taxpayers can appeal to the assessor or Commissioner of the Revenue, the locality’s Board of Equalization, and the relevant Circuit Court.
VML contact: Neal Menkes, firstname.lastname@example.org