Commissioners decide tax exemption policy

North Dakota Senate Bill 2278 states any person claiming a farm-related tax exemption shall sign a verified statement of facts establishing their eligibility.

With a 5-0 vote, the Richland County Board of Commissioners decided the procedure for farm-related tax exemption applications.

Residents seeking the exemption must bring in a tax return as a supplement document to the application they fill out.

“I think it’s the fairest way to do it,” Richland County Assessor Sandy Fossum said Tuesday, Nov. 5.

In October, the commissioners postponed a recommendation on application procedure because they wanted clear guidance from the North Dakota Tax Commissioner’s office.

North Dakota Senate Bill 2278 states any person claiming a farm-related tax exemption shall sign a verified statement of facts establishing their eligibility. Prior to the commissioners’ vote, Fossum recommended applicants bring their tax returns to her office, rather than a worksheet or the form completed by a tax preparer.

“Do you want me to take what they hand in at face value or do you want the numbers verified?” Fossum asked Tuesday.

Earlier in the meeting, Richland County State’s Attorney Megan Kummer was once again directed to draft a policy for handling mud on county roadways.

The policy is expected to be presented at the next commissioners meeting.

In October, Kummer was requested to draft a revised policy. At that time, a revision was expected to use the current ordinance for Richland County, North Dakota, a previous draft and policy in Grand Forks County, North Dakota, as examples to work from.

Grand Forks County’s policy was initially thought to be formed from an ordinance. Kummer was notified that was not the case, Grand Forks County leaders just voted on a policy.

“Do you want me to draft an ordinance or just a policy similar to Grand Forks’?” Kummer asked.

Grand Forks County’s policy is based on policy for Walsh and Traill counties, North Dakota, Richland County commissioners learned.

The commissioners’ next meeting is scheduled for 8 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19 at the Richland County Courthouse, 418 Second Ave. N. in Wahpeton.

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