The impact of special use assessment on land use and income distribution Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/c247dw566

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  • The impact of Oregon's Special Use Assessment (SUA) program was analyzed in relation to farmland values in six regions. Data for the study were obtained from the Oregon Landownership Survey. Data were based on 1975 assessment and ownership characteristics. Farmland value per acre, including improvements, was believed to be influenced by the following factors: special use assessment, gross farm income, population growth rate, income of owner, occupation of owner, distance to the nearest urban area, size of tract, and improvements value. Ordinary least squares was used to test the impact of these factors on farmland value per acre. Tax savings, if any, resulting from SUA were expected to be capitalized into higher farmland values. Study results indicate that SUA did increase farmland values in four of the six regions. In the Coastal region, SUA on unzoned farmland increased values by $932 per acre. In the Valley region, SUA on exclusive farm use (EFU) zoned and unzoned farmland increased values by $977 and $1721 per acre, respectively. SUA increased unzoned farmland values by $1226 per acre in the Southwestern region but had no significant impact on zoned farmland. The value of zoned and unzoned farmland in the Northcentral region was increased by $453 and $865 per acre, respectively. SUA did not have a significant impact on zoned or unzoned farmland values in the Southcentral or Eastern regions. Therefore, it is assumed SUA does not provide tax relief in these regions. This result may be due to the large agricultural tax base in these regions. A large portion of the tax base is reduced by SUA, which necessitates an increase in the tax rate to maintain the same level of county revenues. Therefore, little if any tax relief is realized by the participating farmland owners. The restrictive effect of EFU zoning was expected to offset tax benefits resulting from SUA. As indicated above, there was a difference in the impact of SUA on EFU zoned as compared to unzoned land in the Valley, Southwestern,and Northcentral regions. The impact on zoned land was consistently smaller than on unzoned land in all regions (except the Southcentral where both were not significant). Most of the other variables in the model had the expected signs. Those that did not were not significantly different from zero (except for the distance variable in the Valley region which was explained after closer analysis). Tax savings and the resulting increases in farmland values represent a redistribution of income from nonparticipants to participants in the SUA program. In order to determine who was benefiting from SUA, participants were compared to nonparticipants on a number of ownership characteristics. Participants and nonparticipants did not differ on all characteristics in all regions. However, where there were differences, participants were more likely to be residents, farmers, own land further from urban areas, not have plans to sell their land, own larger acreages, and be in higher income and net worth classes compared to nonparticipants. The tax saving resulting from SUA may be sufficient to prevent a farmer from being forced out of farming. However, the program is not designed to prevent farmland conversion if the owner desires to change use. A circuit-breaker tax program for farmers and EFU zoning merit closer attention as possible alternatives of providing tax relief and farmland preservation.
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Patricia Black(patricia.black@oregonstate.edu) on 2011-11-22T20:57:28Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 SHIRACKROSALYN1978.pdf: 1358867 bytes, checksum: 3ac3f1b3cf53e58c25bb17a4772664fd (MD5)
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