SB383 (2024) Detail

Relative to local tax caps.


SB 383-FN - AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE

 

03/21/2024   1089s

2024 SESSION

24-2997

05/10

 

SENATE BILL 383-FN

 

AN ACT relative to local tax caps.

 

SPONSORS: Sen. Murphy, Dist 16; Sen. Avard, Dist 12; Sen. Innis, Dist 7; Rep. Osborne, Rock. 2; Rep. C. McGuire, Merr. 27; Rep. D. McGuire, Merr. 14; Rep. Edwards, Rock. 31; Rep. L. Turcotte, Straf. 4

 

COMMITTEE: Election Law and Municipal Affairs

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill creates an additional adjustment to local tax caps based on inflation and population changes.  The bill also establishes procedures for adoption of a budget cap by school districts.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

03/21/2024   1089s 24-2997

05/10

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty Four

 

AN ACT relative to local tax caps.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  New Paragraph; Local Tax Cap.  Amend RSA 32:5-b to read as follows:

32:5-b  Local Tax Cap.  Upon adoption under RSA 32:5-c, the following shall apply:

I.  In a town or district that has adopted this section, the estimated amount of local taxes to be raised for the fiscal year, [as shown on the budget] shall include the operating budget and all other warrant articles with a tax impact certified by the governing body or the budget committee and posted [with] on the warrant for the annual meeting pursuant to RSA 32:5[,].  The estimated amount of taxes to be raised for the fiscal year shall not exceed the local taxes raised for the prior year, as shown on the same budget and adjusted as provided in paragraph I-a or I-b, by more than the tax cap authorized when this section was adopted.

I-a.  If the local taxes raised for the prior year were reduced by any fund balance brought forward from previous years, the amount of such reduction shall be added back and included in the amount to which the tax cap is applied under paragraph I.

I-b.(a)  In a town or district that has adopted this paragraph, a tax cap limiting the base amount to be raised by property taxes to last year's base may be adjusted to account for inflation and change in population for towns or village districts, or attendance for school districts, according to the following formula:  this year's base = (last year's base) x (1 + CPI) x (this year's population or attendance / last year's population or attendance).

(b)  In this paragraph:

(1)  "Attendance" shall mean the average daily membership in residence (ADMR) of the school district as of October 1 for each year as reported to the department of education.

(2)  "Base amount" or "base" shall mean the local taxes raised for the prior year.  

(3)  The increase for inflation, or CPI (consumer price index) in the formula above, shall be an annual inflation index published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as of January 1 or the annual Municipal Cost Index (MCI) published by American City and County as of January 1.  

(4)  Population shall mean the population figures calculated by the department of business and economic affairs, office of planning and development pursuant to RSA 78-A:25, III.  

II.  The tax cap shall be either a fixed dollar amount, [or] a fixed percentage, or a multiplication factor applied to the amount of local taxes raised by the town or district for the prior fiscal year as reported to the department of revenue administration, subject to adjustment as provided in paragraph I-a or paragraph I-b.

III.  The legislative body may override the cap by the usual procedures applicable to annual meetings and deliberative sessions of the legislative body.  The provisions of this section shall not limit the legislative body's authority to increase or decrease the amount of any appropriation or the total amount of all appropriations.

2  New Sections; Municipal Budget Law; School District Budget Caps.  Amend RSA 32 by inserting after section 5-c the following new sections:

32:5-d  School District Budget Cap.  Upon adoption under RSA 32:5-e, the following shall apply:

I.  In a school district that has adopted this section, the total amount raised and appropriated for the fiscal year, including the operating budget and all other warrant articles with a tax impact, as shown on the budget certified by the school board or the budget committee and posted with the warrant for the annual meeting pursuant to RSA 32:5, shall not exceed the adopted per pupil cost times the average daily membership in residence (ADMR) of the school district as of October 1 of the year immediately preceding the proposed budget year as reported to the department of education times (1+ IF), where IF is an amount for an annual increase for inflation.

II.  The annual increase for inflation (IF) shall be either an inflation index published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as of January 1 or the annual Municipal Cost Index (MCI) published by American City and County as of January 1.

III.  The legislative body may override the budget cap by the usual procedures applicable to annual school meetings of the legislative body, provided that when a proposed appropriation will cause the total amount raised and appropriated to exceed the budget cap or the total amount already raised and appropriated has exceeded the budget cap, voting on the appropriation question shall be by ballot, but the question shall not be placed on the official ballot used to elect officers, except in the case of a legislative body that uses an official ballot form of meeting under RSA 40:13 or under a charter adopted pursuant to RSA 49-D.  If a 3/5 majority, or the supermajority as determined under a charter pursuant to RSA 49-D, of those voting on the question vote "yes,'' the appropriation is approved.  Only votes in the affirmative or negative shall be included in the calculation of the 3/5 majority or the supermajority as determined under a charter pursuant to RSA 49-D.

IV.(a)  For warrant articles proposing bonds, notes, or other multi-year expenditures, only the first-year estimated costs shall be used in counting appropriations for the budget cap.

(b)  When using the official ballot form of meeting under RSA 40:13, if the warrant article for the operating budget results in appropriations exceeding the budget cap and receives less than 3/5 majority “yes” vote, the adopted operating budget shall be reduced by appropriations already raised to remain compliant with the budget cap.  

(c)(1)  School districts that have adopted the school administrative unit (SAU) alternative budget procedure under RSA 194-C:9-b shall place the warrant article for the SAU budget at the beginning of school district warrant, immediately after any warrant articles proposing bonds or notes.

(2)  For school districts using a traditional meeting and when the outcome of the SAU budget vote is pending on balloting from the other school districts, the higher of the school district's assigned portion of the proposed SAU budget or the school district's assigned portion of the adjusted SAU budget shall be assumed as raised and appropriated for the purpose of determining when the override provisions under paragraph III apply.

32:5-e  Adoption of School District Budget Cap.

I.  The provisions of RSA 32:5-d may be adopted by any school district in the state whose legislative body raises and appropriates funds through an annual meeting.  A 3/5 majority of those voting on the question shall be required to adopt the provisions of RSA 32:5-d.  Only votes in the affirmative or negative shall be included in the calculation of the 3/5 majority.

II.  The question shall be placed on the warrant of the annual or special meeting by the school board or by petition under the procedures set out in RSA 197:2 or 197:6.

III.  A public hearing shall be held by the school board on the question at least 15 days, but not more than 30 days, before the question is to be voted on.  In multi-town school districts, a public hearing shall be held in each town embraced by the district, none of which shall be held on the same day.  Notice of the hearing shall be posted in at least 2 public places in the district and at least 2 public places in each town of multi-town districts, and published in a newspaper of general circulation at least 7 days prior to the date of the hearing.

IV.  The wording of the question shall be: "Shall we adopt the provisions of RSA 32:5-d, and implement a budget cap whereby the school board (or budget committee) shall not submit a recommended budget that is higher than _____ dollars per pupil cost times the average daily membership in residence of the school district as of October 1 of the year immediately preceding the proposed budget year plus a ____ percent annual increase for inflation. Requires a 3/5ths majority of the school district."  Alternatively, if an annual inflation index is used, the wording of the question shall be:  "Shall we adopt the provisions of RSA 32:5-d, and implement a budget cap whereby the school board (or budget committee) shall not submit a recommended budget that is higher than ______ dollars per pupil cost times the average daily membership in residence of the school district as of October 1 of the year immediately preceding the proposed budget year plus an annual increase for inflation using (the index) published by (the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics or American City and County) as of January 1.  Requires a 3/5ths majority of the school district."

V.  Voting on the question shall be by ballot, but the question shall not be placed on the official ballot used to elect officers, except in the case of a legislative body that uses an official ballot form of meeting under RSA 40:13 or under a charter adopted pursuant to RSA 49-D.  Polls shall remain open and ballots shall be accepted by the moderator for a period of not less than one hour following the completion of discussion on the question.  If a 3/5 majority of those voting on the question vote "yes,'' RSA 32:5-d shall apply within the school district beginning with the following fiscal year and for all subsequent years until it is rescinded as provided in paragraph VI.

VI.  Any school district which has adopted RSA 32:5-d may consider rescinding its action in the manner described in paragraphs I through V.  The wording of the question shall be:  "Shall we rescind the provisions of RSA 32:5-d, known as the school district budget cap, as adopted by the (school district) on (date of adoption), so that there will no longer be a school district budget cap limit on the amount raised and appropriated?''  A 3/5 majority of those voting on the question shall be required to rescind the provisions of this section, except in the case of repeal by charter enactment under RSA 49-D.  Only votes in the affirmative or negative shall be included in the calculation of the 3/5 majority.

3  Applicability.  RSA 32:5-b, as amended by section 1 of this act, shall apply to local tax caps adopted prior to the effective date of this act and shall not require local amendment or re-adoption by the town or district.

4  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.

 

LBA

24-2997

Amended 3/22/24

 

SB 383-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE (AMENDMENT #2024-1089s)

 

AN ACT relative to local tax caps.

 

FISCAL IMPACT: [   ] State [   ] County [   ] Local [ X ] None

 

METHODOLOGY:

The Office of Legislative Budget Assistant states this bill, as amended by the Senate, has no fiscal impact on state, county and local expenditures or revenue.

 

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

New Hampshire Municipal Association

 

Amendments

Date Amendment
March 12, 2024 2024-1089s

Links


Date Body Type
Feb. 13, 2024 Senate Hearing
March 21, 2024 Senate Floor Vote
April 17, 2024 House Hearing
April 23, 2024 House Exec Session

Bill Text Revisions

SB383 Revision: 41358 Date: March 22, 2024, 4:21 p.m.
SB383 Revision: 40148 Date: March 19, 2024, 2:49 p.m.
SB383 Revision: 41180 Date: March 12, 2024, 1:46 p.m.

Docket


April 17, 2024: Executive Session: 04/23/2024 11:00 am LOB 301-303


April 10, 2024: Public Hearing: 04/17/2024 01:30 pm LOB 301-303


April 2, 2024: Introduced (in recess of) 03/28/2024 and referred to Municipal and County Government HJ 10


March 21, 2024: Ought to Pass with Amendment 2024-1089s, MA, VV; OT3rdg; 03/21/2024; SJ 7


March 21, 2024: Committee Amendment # 2024-1089s, AA, VV; 03/21/2024; SJ 7


March 12, 2024: Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment #2024-1089s, 03/21/2024, Vote 3-2; SC 11


Feb. 6, 2024: Hearing: 02/13/2024, Room 103, LOB, 09:15 am; SC 7


Dec. 12, 2023: To Be Introduced 01/03/2024 and Referred to Election Law and Municipal Affairs; SJ 1