SENATE, No. 1896

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

215th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED MAY 14, 2012

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  ANTHONY R. BUCCO

District 25 (Morris and Somerset)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Senator Addiego

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Requires fire districts, school districts, and county governments to share in burden of property assessment appeal refunds.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning property tax refunds required by successful property assessment appeals, amending various sections of statutory law and supplementing chapter 4 of Title 40A of the New Jersey Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.  (New section)  a.  The total of the amount of property tax appeal refunds paid by a municipality during a tax year shall be apportioned by the municipal tax collector between the municipality, county, school district, fire districts and any other taxing district operating within the boundaries of the municipality.

     b.  The tax collector shall send a notice to the county, school district, fire districts, and any other taxing district, setting forth their pro rata share of the property tax appeal refunds paid by the municipality during the tax year, for inclusion into their subsequent annual budgets.

     c.  In the year following the tax year in which the property tax appeal refunds were paid, the municipal tax collector shall deduct the applicable pro rata share from the amounts to be paid to the county and each school district, fire district, and any other taxing district, as required by N.J.S.40A:14‑79, R.S.54:4‑74, and R.S.54:4‑75.

 

     2.  N.J.S.40A:14-79 is amended to read as follows:

     40A:14-79.  Upon proper certification pursuant to section 9 of P.L.1979, c.453 (C.40A:14‑78.5), the assessor of the municipality in which the fire district is situate shall assess the amount to be raised by taxation to support the district budget against the taxable property therein, in the same manner as municipal taxes are assessed and the said amount shall be assessed, levied and collected at the same time and in the same manner as other municipal taxes.

     For the purposes of this section:

     "District tax due" or "tax due" means the amount so assessed less the district's proportionate share of the property taxes refunded by the municipality in the preceding tax year pursuant to subsection a. of section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.         ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).

     The collector or treasurer of the municipality in which said district is situate shall pay over all [moneys so assessed] district tax due to the treasurer or custodian of funds of said fire district as follows:  on or before April 1, an amount equaling 21.25% of all [moneys so assessed] tax due; on or before July 1, an amount
equaling 22.5% of all [moneys so assessed] tax due; on or before October 1, an amount equaling 25% of all [moneys so assessed] tax due; and on or before December 31, an amount equaling the difference between the total of all [moneys so assessed] tax due, and the total [amount] of the quarterly amounts of such moneys previously paid over[,]to the fire district.  These moneys are to be held and expended for the purpose of providing and maintaining means for extinguishing fires in such district.

     Notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, the municipal governing body may authorize, in the cash management plan adopted by it pursuant to N.J.S.40A:5‑14, a schedule of payments of fire district [moneys] tax due by which an amount greater than required on any of the first three payment dates cited herein may be paid over.  The municipal governing body and board of fire commissioners may, by concurrent resolution, adopt a schedule of payments of fire district [moneys] tax due by which an amount less than required on any of the first three payment dates cited herein may be paid over.  Such resolution shall be included in the cash management plan adopted by the municipal governing body pursuant to N.J.S.40A:5‑14.

     The commissioners may also pay back, or cause to be paid back to such municipality, any funds or any part thereof paid to the treasurer or custodian of funds of such fire district by the collector or treasurer of the municipality, representing taxes levied for fire district purposes but not actually collected in cash by said collector or treasurer.

(cf:  P.L.1985, c.288, s.4)

 

     3.  R.S.54:4‑74 is amended to read as follows:

     54:4‑74.  For the purpose of this section:

     "County tax due" or "tax due" means the amount so assessed less the county's proportionate share of the property taxes refunded by the municipality in the preceding tax year pursuant to subsection a. of section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.         ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).

     The governing body of each municipality shall cause to be paid to the treasurer of the county, in four installments, the amount of county tax due, and the other county taxes required to be assessed and raised in such municipality, on the fifteenth day of the month in which each installment of taxes shall become payable, except, that in those years when the third installment has been determined by the tax collector to be due after August 10, the installment shall be due no later than five days after the twenty-fifth day from when the tax bill was mailed or otherwise delivered pursuant to subsection a. of R.S.54:4-64, but no later than September 15.  The amount to be payable as each of the first two installments shall be one‑quarter of the total [tax] county tax due and one‑quarter of the other total county taxes finally levied against the municipality for the preceding year, and the amount to be payable for the third and fourth installments shall be the county tax due, and for the other county taxes the full tax as levied, for the current year, less the amount charged as the first and second installments.  The total amount thus found to be payable as the last two installments shall be divided equally for and as each installment.  The governing body of each municipality shall cause to be paid to the county treasurer on December fifteenth of each year all of the taxes required to be assessed and raised by taxation in such taxing district for state school and other state purposes.

(cf:  P.L.2007, c.62, s.36)

 

     4.  R.S.54:4‑75 is amended to read as follows:

     54:4‑75.  For the purpose of this section:

     "School tax due" or "tax due" means the amount so assessed less the school district's proportionate share of the property taxes refunded by the municipality in the preceding tax year pursuant to subsection a. of section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.         ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).

     The governing body of each municipality shall pay over to the board secretary or treasurer of school moneys, as appropriate, in the case of school districts in which appropriations for school purposes are made by the inhabitants of the school district, within forty days after the beginning of the school year, twenty per centum (20%) of the [appropriation for local school purposes] moneys from school tax due, and thereafter, but prior to the last day of the school year, the balance of the moneys [raised in the municipality] from school tax due for school purposes in such amounts as may be requested from time to time [be requested] by the Board of Education, within thirty days after each request.  The Board of Education shall not request any more money at any one time than shall be required for its expenditures for a period of eight weeks  in advance; provided, however, that the Board of Education may at any time, but not earlier than fifteen days prior to the beginning of the school year, request sufficient moneys to meet all interest and debt redemption charges maturing during the first forty days of the school year. The governing body may make payments of such moneys in advance of the time and in excess of the amounts required by this section.  Notwithstanding provisions of this section to the contrary, in those years when the third installment of property taxes has been determined by the tax collector to be due after August 10, the installment shall be due no later than five days after the twenty-fifth day from when the tax bill was mailed or otherwise delivered pursuant to subsection a. of R.S.54:4-64, but no later than September 1.

(cf:  P.L.2010, c.39, s.36)


     5.  R.S.54:4‑76 is amended to read as follows:

     54:4‑76.  The governing body of the municipality or the county shall cause the county tax due, as calculated pursuant to R.S.54:4‑74, and other county taxes levied, [local] school tax due, as calculated pursuant to R.S.54:4‑75, taxes due to other taxing districts, and State taxes to be paid as and when due for payment.  If there shall not be sufficient funds in the treasury available for such payments, the governing body shall immediately borrow sufficient money and pay such taxes due.  The board of chosen freeholders of each county may by resolution fix the rate of discount to be allowed for the payment to the county treasurer of county taxes previous to the date on which they will become due for payment.  The rate so fixed shall not exceed six per centum per annum, and shall be allowed only in case of payment on or before the thirtieth day previous to the date on which said taxes will become due for payment to the county treasurer.  On any part of the taxes payable to the county treasurer and on any part of the taxes payable to the State by the county treasurer, which shall remain unpaid after the time within which they are required to be paid by this chapter, the taxing district or county in arrears shall pay to the county or State, as the case may be, interest at the rate of six per centum per annum upon the delayed payment.

(cf:  P.L.1940, c.21, s.1)

 

     6.  This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill requires county governments, school districts, fire districts and other taxing districts to share in the burden of paying for property tax refunds.  Under current law, only the county shares in this burden with municipalities through the county tax equalization process.  The bill requires the municipal tax collector to send a notice of the pro rata share of the property tax appeal refunds paid by the municipality during the tax year to the county, school districts and fire districts for inclusion into their annual budgets.  In the year following the tax year in which the refunds were paid, the municipal tax collector is then required to deduct the applicable pro rata share of the  property tax refunds from the amounts to be paid to the county and each school district and fire district as required by N.J.S.40A:14‑79, R.S.54:4‑74 and R.S.54:4‑75.