2007 Legislative Summary


Property Tax Bills – Passed in 2007 Regular Session

HB 1166 Modifies county treasurers’ administrative provisions.
2SHB 1277 Relating to expanding competitive local infrastructure financing tools projects.
2SHB 1280 Providing for the use of the school district capital projects funds for technology.
SHB 1381 Makes technical corrections to several property tax statutes.
EHB 1450 Modifies the statute that authorizes exemption for nonprofit organizations providing very low income housing.
2SHB 1811 Amends the exemption provisions for automatic sprinkler systems installed in nightclubs.
E2SHB 1910 Modifies property tax exemption provisions relating to new and rehabilitated multiple-unit dwellings in urban centers by providing affordable housing requirements.
ESHB 2164 Relating to property tax exemptions for multiple-unit housing in urban centers within the boundaries of the campus facilities master plan of any state.
2SHB 1811
EHJR 4204 Constitutional amendment that eliminates the super-majority approval and validation requirement for school district maintenance and operation levies.
SSB 5231 Revising provisions relating to water-sewer districts.
SSB 5463 Modifies forest fire protection assessments.
SB 5468 Regarding the administration of tax programs administered by the Department of Revenue.
ESB 5498 Allows all taxing districts to impose a lid lift in which the levy may exceed the 101% limitation in each of up to 6 consecutive years.
SB 5732 Allows a county treasurer to accept tax payments and issue receipts for such payments once he/she has completed the tax roll for the current year's collection.
ESSB 5836 Addresses the timing of accrual of property tax revenues.

HB 1166 (C 295 L 07) – Modifies county treasurers’ administrative provisions. Among the changes included in this bill are clarifications that for purposes of the advance tax and distraint, personal property includes mobile homes, manufactured homes, and park model trailers, and clarification that tax title lands are exempt from taxation and special assessments except specific local improvement assessments.


2SHB 1277 (C 229 L 07)– Relating to expanding competitive local infrastructure financing tools projects. The Local Infrastructure Financing Tool was tweaked a bit. Changes to property tax provisions include:

  • The definition of “property tax allocation revenue value” is clarified. Value that is treated as new construction under ch. 84.14 RCW (multi-family dwelling exemption) and ch. 84.26 RCW (historic property) is included.
  • Language is added to indicate the property tax allocation revenue value includes 75% of the initial value of new construction. The same value is included in the allocation revenue value on an ongoing basis. When new construction consists of an entire building, 75% of the increase in assessed value of the building is added to the property tax allocation revenue value.
  • “Real property” is defined (for purposes of LIFT) to include privately owned property on publicly owned land.

2SHB 1280 (C 129 L 07) – Providing for the use of the school district capital projects funds for technology. Allows school districts to impose 2-year through 6-year levies to fund costs associated with the application and modernization of technology systems. These levies are in addition to other maintenance and operation levies imposed by the school district, and are not subject to the limitation found in RCW 84.52.053.


SHB 1381 (C 54 L 07) ) – Makes technical corrections to several property tax statutes. RCW 84.33.140 and 84.34.108 are each amended to remove an inoperative provision related to an exception from compensating tax or additional tax if property was sold between July 22, 2001 and July 22, 2003. Some wording is changed in RCW 84.52.010, making the statute a little clearer. Language is added to RCW 84.52.054 to clarify the provisions of this statute apply to excess levy measures by fire protection districts. Finally, RCW 84.55.012 and 84.55.0121 are repealed. These statutes required a reduction in the state levy in 1996, 1997, and 1998.


EHB 1450 (C 301 L 07) – Modifies the statute that authorizes exemption for nonprofit organizations providing very low income housing. The bill expands the sources of funding used by nonprofit organizations to qualify for the property tax exemption. EHB 1450 also adds language to RCW 84.40.030 regarding valuation of real property. The legislation specifies that assessors should consider restrictions on rental income, appreciation, and liquidity as contained in agreements between owners of rental property and government agencies when determining the value of the property.


2SHB 1811 – Amends the exemption provisions for automatic sprinkler systems installed in nightclubs. This legislation extends the exemption to leasehold improvements typically carried as personal property of the lessee.


E2SHB 1910 – Modifies property tax exemption provisions relating to new and rehabilitated multiple-unit dwellings in urban centers by providing affordable housing requirements. One of two separate bills making changes to the exemption for multi-family dwellings in urban areas (ch. 84.14. RCW). E2SHB 1910 changes the size of city in which this exemption may be available. The threshold for city size is reduced from 30,000 to 15,000 and the city size is reduced to 5,000 in “buildable lands” counties. This bill also provides incentive for projects to contain affordable housing. Exemptions approved for applications submitted after this bill became effective will last 8 years. If the project includes affordable housing, the exemption applies for a total of 12 years. Properties for which application was made or exemption approved prior to passage of this legislation are not affected by these timeframes. The exemption period is still 10 years for those properties.


ESHB 2164 (C 185 L 07) – Relating to property tax exemptions for multiple-unit housing in urban centers within the boundaries of the campus facilities master plan of any state. Also affects the exemption for multi-family dwellings in urban areas by prohibiting application of the exemption in areas defined by the University of Washington as necessary for the future growth of its campus. This provision is effective July 1, 2007.


EHJR 4204 – Constitutional amendment that eliminates the super-majority approval and validation requirement for school district maintenance and operation levies. To become law, the amendment must be approved and ratified by a majority of voters in the next general election.


SSB 5231 (C 31 L 07) – Revising provisions relating to water-sewer districts. It creates a procedure for a water-sewer district to annex territory within a city following the district's acquisition of water and/or sewer facilities located within that city.


SSB 5463 (C110 L 07)– Modifies forest fire protection assessments. The $14.50 flat fee is increased to $17.50 per parcel, and the assessment on excess acreage is increased from 25 cents to 27 cents on each acre exceeding 50 acres. The manner in which the fees are imposed and collected is not affected by the legislation.


SB 5468 (C 111 L 07) – Regarding the administration of tax programs administered by the Department of Revenue. This bill makes a couple of changes in the property tax system. It amends statutes related to nonprofit exemptions, eliminating application and renewal fees, making inspections of property discretionary on the part of the Department of Revenue, and paving the way for electronic filing of exemption renewals. The bill also authorizes the waiver of penalties applied to late filing of annual reports of centrally assessed property owners when good cause is shown.


ESB 5498 (C 380 L 07) – Allows all taxing districts to impose a lid lift in which the levy may exceed the 101% limitation in each of up to 6 consecutive years. Counties, cities, and towns have had this ability since 2003. This bill extends the authority to all types of taxing districts. Funds raised through the lid lift may not supplant existing funds, defined as actual operating expenditures made for the specific purposes of the lid lift.


SB 5732 (C 105 L 07) – Allows a county treasurer to accept tax payments and issue receipts for such payments once he/she has completed the tax roll for the current year's collection. It also eliminates the requirement that a county treasurer wait until February 15th to collect tax payments on real property.


SB 5732 (C 105 L 07) – Addresses the timing of accrual of property tax revenues. This bill changes the date taxing district boundaries are established from March 1 to August 1 of the year in which the property tax levy is made. It also establishes new provisions related to the disposition of taxes levied on property within a fire or library district that has been annexed to a city or town. Further, new city and town notification requirements pertaining to annexations of property within a fire or library district are established. ESSB 5836 Implementation memo


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