5713.30 Agricultural land definitions.

As used in sections 5713.31 to 5713.37 and 5715.01 of the Revised Code:

(A) “Land devoted exclusively to agricultural use” means:

(1) Tracts, lots, or parcels of land totaling not less than ten acres that, during the three calendar years prior to the year in which application is filed under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code, and through the last day of May of such year, were devoted exclusively to commercial animal or poultry husbandry, aquaculture, apiculture, the production for a commercial purpose of timber, field crops, tobacco, fruits, vegetables, nursery stock, ornamental trees, sod, or flowers, or the growth of timber for a noncommercial purpose, if the land on which the timber is grown is contiguous to or part of a parcel of land under common ownership that is otherwise devoted exclusively to agricultural use, or were devoted to and qualified for payments or other compensation under a land retirement or conservation program under an agreement with an agency of the federal government;

(2) Tracts, lots, or parcels of land totaling less than ten acres that, during the three calendar years prior to the year in which application is filed under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code and through the last day of May of such year, were devoted exclusively to commercial animal or poultry husbandry, aquaculture, apiculture, the production for a commercial purpose of field crops, tobacco, fruits, vegetables, timber, nursery stock, ornamental trees, sod, or flowers where such activities produced an average yearly gross income of at least twenty-five hundred dollars during such three-year period or where there is evidence of an anticipated gross income of such amount from such activities during the tax year in which application is made, or were devoted to and qualified for payments or other compensation under a land retirement or conservation program under an agreement with an agency of the federal government;

(3) A tract, lot, or parcel of land taxed under sections 5713.22 to 5713.26 of the Revised Code is not land devoted exclusively to agricultural use;

(4) Tracts, lots, or parcels of land, or portions thereof that, during the previous three consecutive calendar years have been designated as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use, but such land has been lying idle or fallow for up to one year and no action has occurred to such land that is either inconsistent with the return of it to agricultural production or converts the land devoted exclusively to agricultural use as defined in this section. Such land shall remain designated as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use provided that beyond one year, but less than three years, the landowner proves good cause as determined by the board of revision.

“Land devoted exclusively to agricultural use” includes tracts, lots, or parcels of land or portions thereof that are used for conservation practices, provided that the tracts, lots, or parcels of land or portions thereof comprise twenty-five per cent or less of the total of the tracts, lots, or parcels of land that satisfy the criteria established in division (A)(1), (2), or (4) of this section together with the tracts, lots, or parcels of land or portions thereof that are used for conservation practices.

(B) “Conversion of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use” means any of the following:

(1) The failure of the owner of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use during the next preceding calendar year to file a renewal application under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code without good cause as determined by the board of revision;

(2) The failure of the new owner of such land to file an initial application under that section without good cause as determined by the board of revision;

(3) The failure of such land or portion thereof to qualify as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use for the current calendar year as requested by an application filed under such section;

(4) The failure of the owner of the land described in division (A)(4) of this section to act on such land in a manner that is consistent with the return of the land to agricultural production after three years.

(C) “Tax savings” means the difference between the dollar amount of real property taxes levied in any year on land valued and assessed in accordance with its current agricultural use value and the dollar amount of real property taxes that would have been levied upon such land if it had been valued and assessed for such year in accordance with Section 2 of Article XII, Ohio Constitution.

(D) “Owner” includes, but is not limited to, any person owning a fee simple, fee tail, or life estate or a buyer on a land installment contract.

(E) “Conservation practices” are practices used to abate soil erosion as required in the management of the farming operation, and include, but are not limited to, the installation, construction, development, planting, or use of grass waterways, terraces, diversions, filter strips, field borders, windbreaks, riparian buffers, wetlands, ponds, and cover crops for that purpose.

(F) “Wetlands” has the same meaning as in section 6111.02 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 09-26-2003

5713.31 County auditor to value land for real property tax purposes - application fee.

At any time after the first Monday in January and prior to the first Monday in March of any year, an owner of agricultural land may file an application with the county auditor of the county in which such land is located, requesting the auditor to value the land for real property tax purposes at the current value such land has for agricultural use, in accordance with rules adopted by the commissioner for the valuation of such land. An owner’s first application with respect to his land shall be in the form of an initial application. Each application filed in ensuing consecutive years after the initial application by that owner shall be in the form of a renewal application. The commissioner shall prescribe the form of the initial and the renewal application, but the renewal application shall require no more information than is necessary to establish the applicant’s continued eligibility to have his land valued for agricultural use, for all lots, parcels, or tracts of land, or portions thereof, within a county, that have been valued at the current value of such land for agricultural use in the preceding tax year.

On or before the second Tuesday after the first Monday in March, the auditor shall determine whether the current owner of any lot, parcel, or tract of land or portion thereof contained in the preceding tax year’s agricultural land tax list failed to file an initial or renewal application, as appropriate, for the current tax year with respect to such lot, parcel, or tract or portion thereof. He shall forthwith notify, by certified mail, each owner who failed to file an application that unless application is filed with the auditor prior to the first Monday of April of the current year, the land will be valued for real property tax purposes in the current tax year at its true value in money and that the recoupment required by sections 5713.34 and 5713.35 of the Revised Code will be placed on the current year’s tax list and duplicate for collection.

Each initial application shall be accompanied by a fee of twenty-five dollars. Application fees shall be paid into the county treasury to the credit of the real estate assessment fund created under section 325.31 of the Revised Code.

Upon receipt of an application and payment of the required fee the auditor shall determine whether the information contained therein is correct and the application complete.

If the auditor determines the information is incorrect or the application is incomplete, he shall return the application to the applicant by certified mail with an enumeration of the items which are incorrect or incomplete. An applicant may file an amended application, without charge, within fifteen days of the receipt of the returned application.

If the auditor determines the application or amended application is complete and the information therein is correct, he shall, prior to the first Monday in June, view or cause to be viewed the land described in the application and determine whether the land is land devoted exclusively to agricultural use.

If the auditor determines, which determination shall be made as of the first Monday of June, annually, that the land is land devoted exclusively to agricultural use he shall appraise it for real property tax purposes in accordance with rules adopted by the commissioner for the valuation of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use and such appraised value shall be the value used by the auditor in determining the taxable value of such land for the current tax year under section 5713.03 of the Revised Code and as shown on the general tax list compiled under section 319.28 of the Revised Code.

The auditor shall enter on the real property record required under section 5713.03 of the Revised Code for the tract, lot, or parcel of land so appraised, in addition to the other information required to be recorded thereon, its value as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use.

Effective Date: 09-09-1988

5713.32 County auditor to notify applicant when land not devoted exclusively to agricultural use.

Prior to the first Monday in August the county auditor shall notify, by certified mail, each person who filed an application or an amended application under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code and whose land the auditor determines is not land devoted exclusively to agricultural use, of the reason for such determination. A complaint against such determination may be made in the manner prescribed in section 5715.19 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 07-26-1974

5713.33 Agricultural land tax list - contents of list.

The county auditor shall make and maintain an “agricultural land tax list,” on forms prescribed by the tax commissioner, listing each tract, lot or parcel of land which has been valued for tax purposes as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code, showing:

(A) The name of the owner;

(B) A description of the land;

(C) The current agricultural use value and taxable value of the land as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use, as provided by section 5713.31 of the Revised Code;

(D) The true value, and taxable value, of the land as determined in accordance with Section 2, Article XII, of the Ohio Constitution;

(E) The dollar amount of real property taxes levied against such land under section 319.30 of the Revised Code for the current tax year;

(F) The dollar amount of real property taxes which would have been levied against such land for the current tax year under section 319.30 of the Revised Code if it had been valued for tax purposes in accordance with Section 2, Article XII, of the Ohio Constitution;

(G) The dollar difference between the amounts shown in divisions (E) and (F) of this section.

Annually, upon determining the sums to be levied upon each tract and lot of real property under section 319.30 of the Revised Code, the county auditor shall enter upon the “agricultural land tax list” for each tract, lot or parcel of land valued under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code for the current tax year the appropriate figures for the current tax year, as required by this section.

Effective Date: 09-27-1983

5713.34 Portion of tax savings on converted lands may be recouped.

(A)(1) Upon the conversion of all or any portion of a tract, lot, or parcel of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use a portion of the tax savings upon such converted land shall be recouped as provided for by Section 36, Article II, Ohio Constitution by levying a charge on such land in an amount equal to the amount of the tax savings on the converted land during the three tax years immediately preceding the year in which the conversion occurs. The charge shall constitute a lien of the state upon such converted land as of the first day of January of the tax year in which the charge is levied and shall continue until discharged as provided by law.

(2) Upon the conversion of an adequately described portion of a tract, lot, or parcel of land, the county auditor shall divide any numbered permanent parcel into economic units and value each unit individually for the purpose of levying the charge under division (A)(1) of this section against only the converted portion.

(B) Except as otherwise provided in division (C) or (D) of this section, a public entity that acquires by any means and converts land devoted exclusively to agricultural use and a private entity granted the power of eminent domain that acquires by any means and converts land devoted exclusively to agricultural use shall pay the charge levied by division (A) of this section and shall not, directly or indirectly, transfer the charge to the person from whom the land is acquired. A person injured by a violation of this division may recover, in a civil action, any damages resulting from the violation.

(C) The charge levied by division (A)(1) of this section does not apply to the conversion of land acquired by a public entity by means other than eminent domain and thereafter used exclusively for a public purpose that leaves the land principally undeveloped when either of the following conditions applies:

(1) In the case of land so acquired and converted by a park district created under Chapter 1545. of the Revised Code, the land is located within the boundaries of the park district.

(2) In the case of land so acquired and converted by a public entity other than a park district created under Chapter 1545. of the Revised Code, the land is located within the boundaries of any city, local, exempted village, or joint vocational school district that is wholly or partially located within the boundaries of the public entity that so acquired and converted the land.

If all or any portion of a tract, lot, or parcel of such land is later developed or otherwise converted to a purpose other than one of the purposes enumerated under division (E)(1) of this section, the charge levied by division (A)(1) of this section shall be levied against such developed or converted land as otherwise required by that division.

The county auditor of the county in which the land is located shall determine annually whether all or any portion of a tract, lot, or parcel of land formerly converted to a purpose enumerated under division (E)(1) of this section has been developed in such a way or converted to such a purpose as to require the charge levied by division (A)(1) of this section to be levied against the land so developed or converted.

(D) Division (B) of this section does not apply to a public entity that acquires by means other than eminent domain and converts land devoted exclusively to agricultural use to use for public, active or passive, outdoor education, recreation, or similar open space uses when either of the following conditions applies:

(1) In the case of land so acquired and converted by a park district created under Chapter 1545. of the Revised Code, the land is located outside the boundaries of the park district.

(2) In the case of land so acquired and converted by a public entity other than a park district created under Chapter 1545. of the Revised Code, the land is located outside the boundaries of any city, local, exempted village, or joint vocational school district that is wholly or partially located within the boundaries of the public entity that so acquired and converted the land.

(E) As used in divisions (C) and (D) of this section:

(1) “Principally undeveloped” means a parcel of real property that is used for public, active or passive, outdoor education, recreation, or similar open space uses and contains only the structures, roadways, and other facilities that are necessary for such uses.

(2) “Public entity” means any political subdivision of this state or any agency or instrumentality of a political subdivision.

Effective Date: 09-03-1996

5713.35 Conversion of land on agricultural land tax list - determination of charges.

On or before the second Monday in September the county auditor shall examine the agricultural land tax list maintained under section 5713.33 of the Revised Code and determine if there has been a conversion of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use of any tract, lot, or parcel of land on such list.

Upon determining there has been a conversion of land devoted exclusively to agricultural use the auditor shall determine the dollar amount of the charge levied against such tract, lot or parcel of land under section 5713.34 of the Revised Code and shall place such amount as a separate item on the tax list for the current tax year to be collected by the county treasurer in the same manner and at the same time as real property taxes levied against such land for the current calendar year are collected. Upon the collection of any charge made under this section and any penalties and interest arising thereon, the auditor, after deducting all fees allowed on the collection of moneys on the tax list and duplicate, shall distribute the full amount thereof among the taxing districts in which the lands against which such amounts have been charged are located in proportion to the per cent of the total real property taxes levied upon such lands in the preceding tax year by each such subdivision. Money distributed to a subdivision under this section shall be allocated among and paid into its various funds in the same proportion that the real property taxes levied during the preceding tax year that are required to be paid into each fund bear to the total real property taxes levied during such year.

Effective Date: 09-21-1982

5713.351 Failure to file an initial or renewal application.

If the county auditor has determined under section 5713.35 of the Revised Code that a conversion of land has occurred with respect to any tract, lot, or parcel on the agricultural land tax list because of a failure to file an initial or renewal application, and if the auditor, upon application of the owner and payment by the owner of a twenty-five dollar fee, finds that the land would be land devoted exclusively to agricultural use for the current year if the board of revision finds the failure arose for good cause, the owner may file a complaint against that determination with the board as provided in section 5715.19 of the Revised Code on the grounds that the tract, lot, or parcel is land devoted exclusively to agricultural use because there was good cause for the owner’s failure to file an initial or renewal application. If the board finds that there was such good cause, the application under this section shall be considered an application that was properly filed under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 09-09-1988

5713.36 Application for valuation of land.

On or before the fifteenth of January of each year, the county auditor shall mail to each current owner of land that was valued as land devoted exclusively to agricultural use during the next preceding calendar year, an application for the valuation of such land as land devoted exclusively to an agricultural use for the current calendar year.

Effective Date: 09-09-1988

5713.37 Prohibited act.

No person shall knowingly give any false information in an application filed under section 5713.31 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 07-26-1974

5713.38 Application for change of valuation of land.

Notwithstanding section 5713.31 of the Revised Code, in any year in which the county auditor has not advertised the completion of his reappraisal or equalization or notified the owner of agricultural land of a change in the valuation of such land prior to the date on which the owner may file an application requesting the auditor to value the land for real property tax purposes at the current value such land has for agricultural use, and there is an increase in such valuation in that year, the owner may file such application for that tax year at any time prior to the first Monday in March of the following calendar year. When filed, such application shall be considered a properly filed application for such valuation on the basis of agricultural use and, if the auditor determines such land otherwise qualified for such valuation, the auditor shall determine the value such land has for agricultural use. If the agricultural use valuation is less than the valuation used by the auditor to determine the taxable value of such land for the tax year for which the application is filed, he shall proceed as if the valuation had been reduced by the board of revision pursuant to section 5715.19 of the Revised Code.

Any real property taxes paid by the owner based on the higher valuation, in excess of the property taxes that would have been due and payable had the land been valued on the basis of its agricultural use, shall be treated as an overpayment of real property taxes in the manner prescribed by section 5715.22 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 11-26-1975

5713.99 Penalty.

Whoever violates section 5713.37 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.

Effective Date: 07-26-1974