Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Bill Stops Assessors from Entering Homes

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Bill Stops Assessors from Entering Homes

Article excerpt

A bill to bar county assessors from entering taxpayers' homes to value property cleared the Oklahoma Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday.

The panel also approved a bill that would leave intact the current decal method for taxing vending machines, and a bill that defines manufacturing businesses for tax exemption purposes.

The bills have cleared the House of Representatives, and will next be considered by the full Senate.

- House Bill 1126 states the county assessor does not have the power or authority to enter the private dwelling of a taxpayer, unless the taxpayer requests a visual inspection of property because of a disagreement on its value.

The bill would set a 35 percent tax rate on intangible personal property and personal property exempt from ad valorem taxation.

Also, it would set up an 11-member Ad Valorem Taxation Advisory Council to develop standards to implement House Bill 1750, an ad valorem reform measure passed by the 1988 Legislature.

Money was never appropriated to effect the changes that were called for, and estimates of the cost range from $50 million to $100 million.

"This council will tell us what needs to be done, how much it will cost statewide and monitor the progress of implementing reforms," said Sen. Stratton Taylor, D-Claremore.

The bill asks for $250,000 to be appropriated to the Legislative Service Bureau to fund the implementation study. The council will report its findings and cost estimates in early 1990.

Principal authors of House Bill 1126 are Taylor and State Rep. Larry Rice, D-Pryor.

- House Bill 1260 leaves intact the present law that requires the purchase of an annual sales tax decal on soft drink machines. It lowers the tax fee on bulk vending machines, and exempts from taxation those coin-operated vending machines owned by schools, churches or government entities. …

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