Florida Senate - 2017                                     SB 272
       By Senator Hutson
       7-00487-17                                             2017272__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to ad valorem taxation; creating s.
    3         193.1553, F.S.; providing definitions; requiring a
    4         property appraiser to reduce the assessed value of a
    5         residential property damaged or destroyed by a natural
    6         disaster under certain conditions; providing
    7         application requirements for a property owner seeking
    8         such a reduction; requiring a property appraiser who
    9         determines a property is eligible for a reduction to
   10         submit a written statement to the tax collector and
   11         specifying the contents thereof; providing duties of
   12         the tax collector relating to a reduction in taxes;
   13         requiring the tax collector to notify the Department
   14         of Revenue and the board of county commissioners of
   15         the total reduction in taxes; providing for
   16         construction; providing retroactive applicability and
   17         procedures; providing an effective date.
   19  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   21         Section 1. Section 193.1553, Florida Statutes, is created
   22  to read:
   23         193.1553Assessment of residential property damaged or
   24  destroyed by a natural disaster.—
   25         (1)As used in this section, the term:
   26         (a)“Natural disaster” means an earthquake, fire, flood,
   27  hurricane, sinkhole, or tornado.
   28         (b)“Residential property” or “property” means a
   29  residential dwelling or house but does not include a structure
   30  that is not essential to use and occupancy of the residential
   31  dwelling or house, including, but not limited to, a detached
   32  utility building, detached carport, detached garage, bulkhead,
   33  fence, or swimming pool.
   34         (2)If a residential property is rendered uninhabitable due
   35  to damage or destruction to the property caused by a natural
   36  disaster, the property appraiser of the county in which the
   37  property is located shall reduce the assessed value of the
   38  property by taking into consideration the damage or destruction
   39  if:
   40         (a)The property owner files an application with the
   41  property appraiser as soon as practicable after the damage or
   42  destruction occurs, but no later than March 1 of the year
   43  following the year of the natural disaster.
   44         (b)The application identifies the property damaged or
   45  destroyed by the natural disaster, the natural disaster that
   46  caused the damage or destruction, the date the damage or
   47  destruction occurred, and the number of months the property was
   48  uninhabitable during the calendar year in which the damage or
   49  destruction occurred.
   50         (c)The application is verified under oath and subject to
   51  the penalty of perjury.
   52         (3)If repairs to a residential property are not
   53  substantially completed within the calendar year, in order to
   54  receive an additional reduction in property value by the
   55  property appraiser, the property owner must file a second
   56  application that meets the requirements of subsection (2) by
   57  March 1 of the year following the date of the first application.
   58  The second application must also specify the date that the
   59  repairs to the property were substantially completed. The
   60  property appraiser shall calculate the number of months the
   61  residential property was uninhabitable during the second
   62  calendar year.
   63         (4)If a property appraiser determines that a residential
   64  property is eligible for a reduction in the assessed value of
   65  the property under this section, the property appraiser must
   66  submit a written statement to the tax collector which includes:
   67         (a)The number of months that the property was
   68  uninhabitable during the calendar year. In calculating the
   69  number of months, a period of at least 16 days shall be
   70  considered a full month.
   71         (b)The most recent assessed value of the residential
   72  property as determined by the property appraiser before the
   73  natural disaster that destroyed or damaged the property.
   74         (c)The assessed value of the property as a result of the
   75  natural disaster, as determined by the property appraiser.
   76         (d)The amount of reduction in the assessed value of the
   77  property.
   78         (5)(a)The tax collector shall reduce the taxes on a
   79  residential property based on the written statement from the
   80  property appraiser pursuant to subsection (4).
   81         (b)By May 1 of each year, the tax collector shall notify
   82  the Department of Revenue and the board of county commissioners
   83  of the county in which the residential property is located of
   84  the total reduction in taxes for all residential property that
   85  received a reduction in taxes under this section.
   86         (6)Homestead property to which this section applies is
   87  considered damaged by misfortune or calamity under s.
   88  193.155(4)(b).
   89         (7)(a)If a residential property was rendered uninhabitable
   90  due to damage or destruction by a natural disaster in 2016, the
   91  property owner must file an application with the property
   92  appraiser before March 1, 2018, and, once approved by the
   93  property appraiser, the owner shall receive the appropriate
   94  reduction in taxes for the 2018 tax year. By May 1, 2018, the
   95  tax collector shall notify the Department of Revenue and the
   96  board of county commissioners of the total reduction in taxes
   97  for all residential properties that received a reduction in
   98  taxes under this subsection.
   99         (b)This subsection applies retroactively to January 1,
  100  2016.
  101         Section 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.