The Vermont Statutes Online
The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.
NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.
Subchapter 002 : Restricted Exemptions(Cite as: 32 V.S.A. § 3846)
§ 3846. Farmland appraisal contracts
(a) As used in this section:
(1) “Farmland” means real estate that is actively and exclusively devoted to farming and that is at least 25 acres in area and is operated or leased as a farm enterprise by the owner.
(2) “Forestland” means any land, exclusive of any housesite, which is at least 25 acres in size and which is under active forest management for the purpose of growing and harvesting repeated forest crops.
(3) “Owner” of farmland or forestland means the record holder of the legal title (with closed leaseland, of the perpetual leasehold interest therein) individually, jointly with a member of his or her family, or as a member of a partnership all members of which are actively engaged in agriculture in Vermont.
(b) The legislative body of a municipality may negotiate tax stabilization contracts with the owners of farmland or forestland pursuant to the provisions of 24 V.S.A. § 2741, except that to negotiate such contracts the legislative body of the municipality shall be deemed to have the authorization of the municipality under 24 V.S.A. § 2741(b).
(c) Any tax stabilization contract negotiated without the approval of a vote of the municipality under subsection (b) of this section shall provide that each appropriate taxing jurisdiction in which the property is located, including municipalities and school districts, shall compute the difference between the taxes due on such land under a farmland or forestland stabilization contract and the amount of taxes that would have been owed on such land at a fair market value appraisal. In the event of a conversion of the land from farmland or forestland to another use in breach of the contract, the sum of the differences between these two amounts of taxes for the previous three years shall be paid by the owner of the land under contract to the municipality within 30 days of the conversion. The contract shall constitute a lien in favor of the municipality against the property subject to the contract for payment of any amounts due the municipality under this subsection.
(d) Whenever the assessing officials deny in whole or in part any application for classification as farmland or forest land or grant a different classification than that applied for, or fix an erroneous use value appraisal for eligible land, the aggrieved owner may appeal the decision in accordance with the provisions set forth in chapter 131 of this title. The appeal shall be heard in the same manner and under the same procedures as other appeals relating to real property appraisals and taxation. (Added 1977, No. 105, § 24.)