2000 Regular Session
To: Ways and Means
By: Representative Clark
House Bill 756
AN ACT TO CREATE A NEW SECTION TO BE CODIFIED AS SECTION 27-19-56.15, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REQUIRE OWNERS OF ALL-TERRAIN VEHICLES TO REGISTER SUCH VEHICLES AND OBTAIN A SPECIAL LICENSE TAG; TO PRESCRIBE FEES FOR THE ISSUANCE OF SUCH LICENSE TAGS; TO PROVIDE THAT IT SHALL BE UNLAWFUL FOR A PERSON WHO OWNS AN ALL-TERRAIN VEHICLE TO FAIL TO PURCHASE OR DISPLAY THE SPECIAL LICENSE TAG ON SUCH VEHICLE, AND TO PRESCRIBE A PENALTY FOR A VIOLATION THEREOF; TO AMEND SECTION 27-51-41, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO EXEMPT SUCH SPECIAL LICENSE TAGS FROM AD VALOREM TAX; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The following shall be codified as Section 27-19-56.15, Mississippi Code of 1972:
27-19-56.15. (1) The term "all-terrain vehicle," as used in this section, means any motorized vehicle manufactured and designed exclusively for off-road use that is fifty (50) inches or less in width, has an unladen dry weight of six hundred (600) pounds or less, travels on three (3), four (4) or more low pressure tires, has a seat designed to be straddled by the operator and uses handlebars for steering control.
(2) Beginning July 1, 2000, every owner of an all-terrain vehicle who is a resident of this state shall register such vehicle with the county tax collector and shall pay a fee in the amount provided in subsection (4) of this section. Upon registration and payment of such fee, the applicant shall be issued a special license tag for such all-terrain vehicle. The special license tags so issued shall be of such color, design and size as the State Tax Commission may prescribe and shall consist of such letters or numbers, or both, as may be necessary to distinguish each license tag.
(3) Application for the special license tags authorized by this section shall be made to the county tax collector on forms prescribed by the State Tax Commission. The application and the registration fee imposed under subsection (4) of this section, less five percent (5%) thereof to be retained by the tax collector, shall be remitted to the State Tax Commission within seven (7) days of the date the application is made. The portion of the registration fee retained by the tax collector shall be deposited into the county general fund. The portion of the registration fee paid to the State Tax Commission shall be deposited into the State General Fund.
(4) Any person applying for a special license tag under this section shall pay a registration fee in the amount of Ten Dollars ($10.00) for each special license tag applied for under this section. The special license tags issued under the provisions of this section shall be exempt from all privilege taxes, ad valorem taxes or other taxes or fees. The registration fee shall be a one-time fee which shall not again be due or payable for as long as the applicant owns the vehicle. If the owner sells or transfers ownership of the vehicle, the purchaser or transferee shall make application for the issuance of a new special license tag and shall pay the registration fee required under this subsection.
(5) If a special license tag issued under this section is lost, stolen or destroyed, the owner may make application and affidavit for a replacement special license tag. The fee for a replacement special license tag shall be Five Dollars ($5.00). The tax collector receiving such application and affidavit shall be entitled to retain and deposit into the county general fund five percent (5%) of the fee for such replacement license tag and the remainder shall be distributed in the same manner as funds from the sale of original special license tags issued under this section.
(6) The county tax collector shall maintain a record of each special license tag issued under this section in the same manner as records are maintained for regular license tags issued by the tax collector.
(7) Any person who violates this section by failing to purchase a special license tag or by failing to display such license tag on an all-terrain vehicle at all times is guilty of a misdemeanor and may be fined in an amount not to exceed Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00). However, conviction for a violation of this section shall not be entered upon the driving record of any individual and no state assessment provided for by Section 99-19-73, or any other provision of law may be imposed or collected.
(8) The purchase or display of a special license tag issued under this section shall not authorize or make it lawful for a person to operate an all-terrain vehicle upon a public highway, road or street in this state.
SECTION 2. Section 27-51-41, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
27-51-41. (1) The exemptions from the provisions of this chapter shall be confined to those persons or property exempted by this chapter or by the provisions of the Constitution of the United States or the State of Mississippi. No exemption as now provided by any other statute shall be valid as against the tax levied by this chapter. Any subsequent exemption from the tax levied hereunder shall be provided by amendment to this section which shall be inserted in the bill at length.
(2) The following shall be exempt from ad valorem taxation:
(a) All motor vehicles, as defined in this chapter, and including motor-propelled farm implements and vehicles, while in the hands of bona fide dealers as merchandise and which are not being operated upon the highways of this state, shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(b) All motor vehicles belonging to the federal government or the State of Mississippi or any agencies or instrumentalities thereof shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(c) All motor vehicles owned by any school district in the state shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(d) All motor vehicles owned by any fire protection district incorporated in accordance with Sections 19-5-151 through 19-5-207 or by any fire protection grading district incorporated in accordance with Sections 19-5-215 through 19-5-243 shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(e) All motor vehicles owned by units of the Mississippi National Guard shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(f) All motor vehicles which are exempted from highway privilege taxes under Section 27-19-1 et seq. shall be exempt from ad valorem taxes.
(g) All motor vehicles operated in this state as common and contract carriers of property, private commercial carriers of property, private carriers of property and buses, all of which have a gross weight in excess of ten thousand (10,000) pounds, shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(h) Antique automobiles as defined in Section 27-19-47 shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(i) Street rods as defined in Section 27-19-56.6 shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(j) Motor vehicles owned by disabled American veterans, or by spouses of deceased disabled American veterans, in accordance with Section 27-19-53, shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(k) One (1) motor vehicle owned by the unremarried surviving spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States who, while on active duty, is killed or dies and one (1) motor vehicle owned by the unremarried surviving spouse of a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces of the United States or of the National Guard who, while on active duty for training, is killed or dies shall be exempt from ad valorem taxes.
(l) Motor vehicles owned by recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor or by former prisoners of war, or by spouses of such deceased persons, in accordance with Section 27-19-54, shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(m) Any religious society, ecclesiastical body or any congregation thereof shall be exempt from ad valorem taxation on one (1) private carrier of passengers, as defined in Section 27-19-3, owned by it, which is used exclusively for such society and not for profit. All motor vehicles owned by any such religious society or any educational institution having a seating capacity greater than seven (7) passengers and used exclusively for transporting passengers for religious or educational purposes and not for profit shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(n) All motor vehicles primarily used as rentals under rental agreements with a term of not more than thirty (30) continuous days each and under the control of persons who are engaged in the business of renting such motor vehicles and who are subject to the tax under Section 27-65-231 shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(o) Antique motorcycles as defined in Section 27-19-47.1, shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(p) Motor vehicles owned by recipients of the Purple Heart as provided in Section 27-19-56.5.
(q) All-terrain vehicles, as defined under Section 27-19-56.15, are exempt from all ad valorem taxes.
(3) Any claim for tax exemption by authority of the above-mentioned code sections or by any other legal authority shall be set out in the application for the road and bridge privilege license, and the specific legal authority for such tax exemption claim shall be cited in said application, and such authority cited shall be shown by the tax collector on the tax receipt as his authority for not collecting such ad valorem taxes, and the tax collector shall carry forward such information in his tax collection reports.
(4) Any motor vehicle driven over the highways of this state to the extent that the owner of such motor vehicle is required to purchase a road and bridge privilege license in this state, yet the legal situs of such motor vehicle is located in another state, shall be exempt from ad valorem taxes authorized by this chapter.
(5) If a taxpayer shall sell, trade or otherwise dispose of a vehicle on which the ad valorem and road and bridge privilege taxes have been paid in any county in the state, he shall remove the license plate from the vehicle. Such license plate must be surrendered to the issuing authority with the corresponding tax receipt, if required, and credit shall be allowed for the taxes paid for the remaining tax year on like privilege or ad valorem taxes due on another vehicle owned by the seller or transferor or by the seller's or transferor's spouse or dependent child. If the seller or transferor does not elect to receive such credit at the time the license plate is surrendered, the issuing authority shall issue a certificate of credit to the seller or transferor, or to the seller's or transferor's spouse or dependent child, or to any other person, business or corporation, at the direction of the seller or transferor, for the remaining unexpired taxes prorated from the first day of the month following the month in which the license plate is surrendered. The total of such credit may be used by the person or entity to whom the certificate of credit is issued, regardless of the relative amounts attributed to privilege taxes or to county, school or municipal ad valorem taxes. Any credit allowed for taxes due or any certificate of credit issued may be applied to like taxes owed in any county by the person to whom the credit is allowed or by the person possessing the certificate of credit. No credit, however, shall be allowed on the charge made for the license plate. Such license plates surrendered to the tax collector shall be retained by him, and in no event shall such license plate be attached to any vehicle after being surrendered to the tax collector, nor shall any license plate be transferred from one (1) vehicle to any other vehicle.
(6) If the person owning a vehicle subject to taxation under the provisions of this chapter does not operate such vehicle on the highways of this state from the date of acquisition or, if previously registered, from the end of the anniversary month of the tag and decals to the date on which he makes application for a current license tag or decals, he shall pay such ad valorem tax for a period of twelve (12) months beginning with the first day of the month in which he applies for a current license tag or decals under Chapter 19, Title 27, Mississippi Code of 1972. The owner shall submit an affidavit with an application attesting to the fact that the vehicle was not operated on the highways of this state from the date of acquisition or, if previously registered, from the end of the anniversary month of the tag and decals to the date on which he makes application for the current license tag or decals.
(7) Any person found violating any of the provisions of this section shall be arrested and tried, and if found guilty shall be fined in an amount double the total amount of taxes involved.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2000.