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PRESS RELEASE FROM THE TOWN OF BOLTON

On June 28, 2024, Town of Bolton staff became aware of an issue with some tax bills being calculated with the previous assessed value and the new mil rate resulting in undervalued tax bills. Further investigation revealed that this affected 556 accounts. Those accounts are being rebilled correctly. Only those 556 affected accounts have a revised deadline of August 30, 2024, to pay without penalty. All other tax bills are due not later than August 1, 2024. Closer investigation also found that the grand list calculations were incorrect, and it is $30,703,164.00 lower than it should be. With the current mil rate and the new grand list valuation the Town will collect approximately $1,000,000.00 more in taxes than is necessary to operate the Town for the current fiscal year. The Board of Selectmen and Finance Committee met on July 8, 2024, to discuss this matter. At their meeting they determined that they would continue to collect taxes based on the proper evaluations and the current mil rate. They also were in consensus that they would like to return funds to taxpayers in excess of the amount approved by taxpayers for this fiscal year. In an effort to determine the best way to accomplish that they formed an ad hoc committee which includes members of both boards. The charge of that committee is to work with the town administrator and town attorney to determine the most effective and efficient way to accomplish that task. They have also been tasked with completely investigating the issue and determining what happened and how to prevent it from occurring again in the future.

Farm and Forest Programs

Farm Machinery and Equipment Exemption:  Application for the exemption of up to 100,000 in assessed value of farm machinery and equipment must be filed annually with the Assessor no later than November 1. 

To be eligible, a farming operation must be an active agricultural business with at least $15,000 in gross sales or at least $15,000 in expenses related to the farming operation in the previous calendar year.  Applications for the 2023 Grand List are due no later than 11/1/2023 and will be evaluated using 2022 calendar year income and expenses. 

The notarized M-28B form is filed at the same time as the Personal Property Declaration.  It must be filed every year.
M28B Form

Farm Building Exemption Application for the exemption of up to 100,000 in assessed value per farm building must be filed annually with the Assessor no later than November 1. 

To be eligible a farm building must be used actually and exclusively for farming activities. Only farmers with at least $15,000 in gross sales or $15,000 in expenses related to such farming operation are eligible to file the notarized M-28A Form.

There is no limitation to the number of buildings that may be eligible for an exemption. Each building will be reviewed on its own merits.  A physical inspection of the farm building in question may be required.
M28A Form

Public Act 490 Farm Land and Forest Land Use Classification:     New owners of eligible real estate must make application for its designation as farm or forest land to the Assessor between September 1 and October 31.  Applications for the 2023 Grand List are due no later than October 31, 2023. 

In return for keeping the land in forest or farm use, the assessment is reduced and based on rates established by the CT Department of Agriculture every 5 years.  There is a ten year penalty period triggered by a sale or change in use of the property within the first ten years of enrollment.  The additional conveyance tax percentage declines over the 10 years.  There are variations on the conveyance tax period and application.  Speak with the Assessor if you have specific questions.

Owners of land already enrolled in the property who change title for no money, or who change the use of the property must file an updated application to avoid declassification.  In addition, if the property is classified as forest and there is a change in title, a new Forest Management Plan will be required if the existing one is more than 10 years old.  Additional details can be found in the application packets. 

 Farmland application packet

Forest Land application packet

2023 State of CT Directory of Certified Forest Practitioners

 

Dairy Farm Abatement The Town of Bolton passed a local ordinance providing eligible dairy farms with up to a 50% abatement of taxes on buildings and land used exclusively as a dairy farm.  Specific requirements apply.  There is a 10 year recapture period when the dairy farm use ceases.

Dairy Farm application
Dairy Farm ordinance