San Joaquin County farmers stand to help pay for the county's loss of state Williamson Act funds. They will find out at Tuesday's meeting of the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors.
The board will consider taking advantage of Assembly Bill 1265, in which state lawmakers now allow counties to shorten their 10-year Williamson Act contracts with farmers to nine years. That would require property owners to pay a higher assessed value reflecting the shortened contract, County Administrator Manuel Lopez said in a staff report.
The change would result in a tax increase of up to 10 percent for farmers under the Williamson Act, Lopez said.
The Williamson Act is intended for property owners to keep their land in agricultural production for at least 10 years. The act reduces their property tax to compensate for not being allowed to sell their land to a housing or commercial developer.
Five San Joaquin Valley counties have adopted the provisions of AB 1265. If the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors adopts the Williamson Act changes, they would take effect with property taxes for the 2012-13 fiscal year.
The county used to get about $2 million in Williamson Act subventions from the state, but the county would recover $1.4 million of that amount if the board reduces the contract length, Lopez said.
But the state virtually eliminated Williamson Act funding in the 2009-10 fiscal year to make up for lost revenue at the state level.
Tuesday's board meeting will begin at 9 a.m. in the board chambers, 44 N. San Joaquin St. at Weber Avenue, sixth floor, Stockton.
Contact reporter Ross Farrow at firstname.lastname@example.org.