(1) If, on or before December 31 in any calendar year, any real or personal property placed upon the assessment roll of that year is destroyed in whole or in part, or is in an area that has been declared a disaster area by the governor or the county legislative authority and has been reduced in value by more than twenty percent as a result of a natural disaster, the true and fair value of such property shall be reduced for that assessment year by an amount determined by taking the true and fair value of such taxable property before destruction or reduction in value and deduct therefrom the true and fair value of the remaining property after destruction or reduction in value.
(2) Taxes levied for collection in the year in which the true and fair value has been reduced under subsection (1) of this section shall be abated in whole or in part as provided in this subsection. The amount of taxes to be abated shall be determined by first multiplying the amount deducted from the true and fair value under subsection (1) of this section by the rate of levy applicable to the property in the tax year. Then divide the product by the number of days in the year and multiply the quotient by the number of days remaining in the calendar year after the date of the destruction or reduction in value of the property. If taxes abated under this section have been paid, the amount paid shall be refunded under RCW 84.69.020
. The tax relief provided for in this section for the tax year in which the damage or destruction occurred does not apply to property damaged or destroyed voluntarily.
(3) No reduction in the true and fair value or abatements shall be made more than three years after the date of destruction or reduction in value.
(4) The assessor shall make such reduction on his or her own motion; however, the taxpayer may make application for reduction on forms prepared by the department and provided by the assessor. The assessor shall notify the taxpayer of the amount of reduction.
(5) If destroyed property is replaced prior to the valuation dates contained in RCW 36.21.080
, the total taxable value for that assessment year shall not exceed the value as of the appropriate valuation date in RCW 36.21.080
, whichever is appropriate.
(6) The taxpayer may appeal the amount of reduction to the county board of equalization in accordance with the provisions of RCW 84.40.038
. The board shall reconvene, if necessary, to hear the appeal.
Contingent effective date—2001 c 187:
"Sections 29, 30, and 31 of this act take effect for taxes levied in 2001 for collection in 2002 and thereafter if the proposed amendment to Article VII, section 1 of the state Constitution providing for valuation increases to be phased in over a period of four years is validly submitted to and is approved and ratified by voters at the next general election. If the proposed amendment is not approved and ratified, sections 29, 30, and 31 of this act are null and void. If such proposed amendment is approved and ratified, sections 2 through 13, 16 through 19, and 21 through 28 of this act are null and void." [ 2001 c 187 § 32.
Reviser's note: No proposed amendment to Article VII, section 1 of the state Constitution was submitted to the voters.
Application—2001 c 187:
See note following RCW 84.40.020
Severability—1999 sp.s. c 8:
"If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [ 1999 sp.s. c 8 § 3.
Effective date—1999 sp.s. c 8:
"This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and takes effect immediately [June 7, 1999]." [ 1999 sp.s. c 8 § 4.
Application—Severability—Part headings not law—Referral to electorate—1997 c 3:
See notes following RCW 84.40.030
Severability—1974 ex.s. c 196:
See note following RCW 84.56.020
Refund of property taxes: Chapter 84.69