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PROPERTY TAXES
TAXES & ASSESSMENTS

Ad Valorem & Non-Ad Valorem Assessments

Ad valorem taxes are levied annually based on the value of real estate property and tangible personal property.

Non-ad valorem assessments are also made on real property for essential services, such as fire protection and garbage collection.

The term real estate tax is a common reference to a tax on real property. Real property refers to land, buildings, fixtures, and all other improvements to the land.

Real estate taxes consist of ad valorem taxes and non-ad valorem assessments.

In Florida, tangible personal property taxes refers to ad valorem taxes on the assessed value of furniture, fixtures, and equipment located in business and/or rental properties and on mobile home additions, where the owner of the mobile home does not also own the land upon which it is affixed. Mobile home additions subject to taxation include skirting, screen rooms, utility sheds, awnings, air conditioning and heating units.


STATE PROHIBITION: Florida's Constitution prohibits state government from levying ad valorem taxes on real property and tangible personal property. This gives counties, school districts, municipalities, and special taxing districts the exclusive right to levy ad valorem taxes on real property and tangible personal property. However, the state legislature can and does regulate the maximum rate at which ad valorem taxes can be levied and the manner in which they are collected.

Model Property Tax System

The Tax Collector collects all ad valorem taxes levied in Polk County. The Tax Collector also collects non-ad valorem assessments.

Ad valorem taxes are levied annually based on the value of real property and tangible personal property.

Ad valorem assessments are made each January 1st.

Real property is defined as land, buildings, fixtures, and all other improvements to the land.

Non-ad valorem assessments are also made on real property for essential services, such as fire protection and garbage collection.

The ad valorem tax roll is certified to the Tax Collector by the Property Appraiser. The Property Appraiser determines the assessed value of property.

The County Commission, School Board, municipalities, and other ad valorem taxing bodies set the millage rates for properties within their boundaries. The millage rate is the dollar amount to be paid in taxes for every $1,000 of appraised valuation.

Example: If the taxable value of your home is $75,000 and your city’s millage rate is 7.2 mills, then the taxes due would be calculated as follows:

   Taxable Home Value of $75,000 1,000 = 75

       75 x 7.2 mills = $540 in City Taxes Due

Non-ad valorem assessment rolls are certified to the Tax Collector by local governing boards or non-ad valorem assessing authorities, such as the Solid Waste Authority, fire district and water control districts.

The Tax Collector consolidates the certified ad valorem and non-ad valorem tax rolls and mails tax notices to property owners. Ad valorem taxes and non-ad valorem assessments are due beginning November 1st or soon after the tax roll is certified.

Tax notices are mailed October 31st. Florida law makes taxpayers responsible for knowing that their property taxes are due each year. Ad valorem taxes and non-ad valorem assessments become delinquent on April 1st.

"Florida's model property tax system provides checks and balances to protect taxpayers!"

Floridians have established a property tax system that incorporates a structure of checks and balances to protect taxpayers from favoritism, abuse and corruption.

Under this system, three distinct and separate functions are established:

    Levy Of Taxes

    Appraisal Of Property

    Collection Of Taxes

The levying of property taxes is performed by the various taxing authorities, such as the county commission, a municipality, or school board, etc. The taxing authority determines the millage rate (rate of taxes), which are applied to your property.

The appraisal of property is performed by the Property Appraiser, who is responsible for determining the value of your property (including exemptions).

Finally, the system of checks and balances is completed by the collection of property taxes, which is performed by the Tax Collector. The Tax Collector obtains the taxing authority’s millage rate and the appraised value of your property as determined by the Property Appraiser. After processing this information, the tax collector mails tax bills, then collects and distributes the property taxes due.

Since the essential elements of our property tax system are governed by separate and independent governmental entities, there is in place a basic framework of safeguards to help insure the public trust.



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