Articles Posted in Property Tax

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On Sept. 30-Oct. 2, members of Pillsbury SALT will lead discussions at COST’s property tax workshop in Las Vegas. This event aims to bring multistate property tax professionals together and discuss timely legislative and litigation updates, trends and opportunities to make sure your business’s property is not over taxed.

Topics will include:

  • “Central or Local Assessment? Why It Matters and How to Take Advantage of Either Process,” (Breann Robowski)
  • “California – A Property Tax Nation unto Itself” (Craig Becker)
  • “Best Practices for Getting Fair High-Tech Property Valuations.” (Breann Robowski)
  • “Ask the Experts – Practitioners Addressing Issues for Free” (Craig Becker)

For more information and to register, please visit the event page.

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After a successful SALT Retreat in Napa, Calif., the team headed to Foster City to present on topics at the COST State and Local Tax Workshop for Technology Companies. Marc Simonetti kicked things off by presenting on the session regarding market-based sourcing for tech companies. The following day Carley Roberts, Craig Becker, and Jeffrey Vesely spoke on a variety of topics including an overview of new and established local taxes in cities that are aggressively targeting businesses, property tax issues that impact the tech industry, and a question and answer panel with the experts. The presentations were very informative and the Workshop was a success!

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On July 23-24, members of Pillsbury SALT will lead discussions at COST’s much anticipated state and local tax technology workshop in Foster City, Calif. This one-and-a-half day event promises to deliver in-depth state and local tax content tailored to technology businesses—everything from startups to long established companies. The varied presentations are for those new to tax and those who are tax savvy.

Pillsbury SALT members will lead discussions on a number of topics, including:

  • “Market-Based Sourcing for Tech Companies: Identifying ‘Customers’ and Locating Their ‘Benefits'” (Marc Simonetti)
  • “Beware of the Locals—They Might Take You by Surprise” (Carley Roberts)
  • “All Things Property Tax for Tech Companies” (Craig Becker)
  • “Ask The Experts” (Jeffrey Vesely)

For more information and to register, please visit the event page.

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On July 31, Breann Robowski presents “Life in the Fast Lane … New Rules of the Road for Internet Regulation: How Do Changes in Net Neutrality Impact Property Taxes?” during the Center for Management Development’s 48th Annual Taxation Conference Appraisal for Ad Valorem Taxation Conference 2018.

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TAKEAWAYS

  • New initiative seeks to eliminate Proposition 13 protection for commercial and industrial property by requiring fair market value reassessments at least every three years
  • Initiative seeks to add a $500,000 tangible personal property tax exemption for all taxpayers and a full exemption for taxpayers with less than 50 California employees.

Initiative 17-0055 seeks to put two significant changes to California’s property tax system before voters in November—(1) the elimination of Proposition 13 protection for commercial and industrial properties in favor of reassessment at least every three years and (2) the addition of a tangible personal property tax exemption of $500,000 for all taxpayers and a full tangible personal property tax exemption for taxpayers with less than 50 California employees. Proponents of the Initiative claim these revisions are needed to raise funding to support California schools.

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(This article originally was published in Vol. 25, No. 4 of the California Lawyers Association’s California Tax Lawyer.)

Section 995 and 995.2 of the California Revenue & Taxation Code exempt all software except for basic operational programs from property taxation. Basic input output systems, known as BIOS, draw the line between the taxable and nontaxable. BIOS, which by definition is necessary to the operation of the computer, handles primitive functions such as turning the computer on and off. BIOS is taxable. Everything else, such as operating systems like Windows, is not taxable. (Property Tax Rule 152; Cardinal health 301 Inc. v. County of Orange (2008) 167 Cal.Appl.4th 219.) Often, computers or other electronic devices are sold with nontaxable software (i.e., non-basic operating systems or application software) preloaded onto the device. When there is no separate sales price for the nontaxable software, it is termed “bundled” or “embedded” software. Embedded software is not taxable. Id.

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In 926 North Ardmore Avenue, LLC v. County of Los Angeles, the 2nd District Court of Appeal held that Proposition 13 changes in ownership prompted by transfers of legal entity interests should also be characterized as “realty sold,” resulting in the imposition of realty transfer taxes under the California Documentary Transfer Tax Act in cases even where no real property interests are transferred at all.

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On June 3, 2014, in a published decision, the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District affirmed the Superior Court ruling in Ocean Avenue LLC v. County of Los Angeles, holding that even though 100 percent of an entity was sold, a reassessable change in ownership of the entity’s real property did not occur because no one person obtained more than 50 percent of the entity. Assembly Bill 2372 would change that result by requiring reassessment of an entity’s realty if 90 percent or more of its ownership interests were sold within a three year period, even if no one owner acquired more than 50 percent.

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