[Adopted 10-13-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-5]
This article shall be known as and may be cited as the "Utility Consumers Tax Ordinance of Carroll County, Virginia, Ordinance No. 2004-5."
Jurisdiction. The provisions of this article shall apply to Carroll County, Virginia, including the incorporated municipalities where the utility consumers tax does not exist.
Purpose: to impose a tax on the consumers of public utility companies which do business in Carroll County and to enlarge the County's tax base.
In the construction of this article, the rules contained in this section shall be observed and applied, except when the context clearly indicates otherwise:
Words used in the present tense shall include the future, and words used in the singular number shall include the plural number, and the plural the singular.
The word "shall" is mandatory and not discretionary.
The word "may" is permissive and not mandatory.
The word "approved" shall be considered to be followed by the words "or disapproved."
The masculine gender includes the feminine and neuter.
Any reference to this article includes all ordinances amending or supplementing the same.
For the purpose of this article, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings respectively ascribed by this section:
- COMMERCIAL USER
- The owner or tenant of property providing a service, buying or selling goods, including but not limited to the owners of apartment building and trailer courts receiving utility service through master meters, except that such term shall mean any person furnished utility service classified as "business" under tariffs filed with the State Corporation Commission.
- INDUSTRIAL USER
- The owner or tenant of property producing a product for sale, including but not limited to manufacturing, mining and construction services, except that such term shall also mean any person furnished utility service classified as "business" under tariffs filed with the State Corporation Commission.
- MOBILE LOCAL TELECOMMUNICATION SERVICE
- Any two-way mobile or portable local telecommunication service and specialized mobile radio.
- Includes individuals, firms, partnerships, associations, corporations, and combinations of individuals of whatever form and character.
- Every person who purchases utility services.
- RESIDENTIAL USER
- The owner or tenant of any private residential property or the tenant of any multifamily residential unit which is responsible for the payment of utility services for that property, except that such term shall mean any person furnished utility service classified as "residential" under tariffs filed with the State Corporation Commission.
- Any person who sells or furnishes telephone, gas, or electrical service.
- UTILITY SERVICE
- Local telephone service (excluding long-distance charges) and electrical services provided and used within the boundaries of Carroll County, Virginia.
Consumer, gross charge, mobile service consumer, mobile service provider, service address and taxable purchasers. The terms "consumer," "gross charge," "mobile service consumer," "mobile service provider," "service address" and "taxable purchase" shall have the meanings as provided in § 58.1-3812, Code of Virginia 1950, as amended, and such definitions are incorporated herein by reference.
There is hereby imposed and levied upon each and every purchaser of a utility service a tax in the following amounts:
Electricity. On purchasers of electric services for residential purposes, the tax shall be in the amount of $0.01140 per kilowatt hour (kwh) delivered by a service provider, not to exceed a maximum of $3 per month.
[Amended 1-18-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-1]
On purchasers of electricity for commercial purposes, the tax shall be in the amount of $0.0290 per kilowatt hour (kwh) delivered by a service provider, not to exceed a maximum of $20 per month.
On purchasers of electricity for industrial purposes, the tax shall be in the amount of $0.0115 per kilowatt hour (kwh) delivered by a service provider, not to exceed a maximum of $50 per month.
Telephones. On purchasers of telephone service for residential or commercial or industrial purposes, the tax shall be in the amount of 20% of the charges, exclusive of any federal or state tax thereon, made by the seller with respect to such telephone service; provided, however, that in any case any monthly bill for residential use shall exceed $15, there shall be no tax computed on so much of such bill as shall exceed $15, which provides a maximum monthly levy for such purchasers of $3; and provided, further, that in any case any monthly bill for telephone service for commercial or industrial purposes shall exceed $25, there shall be no tax on such bill as exceeds $25, which provides a maximum monthly levy of $5; provided, however, no tax shall be imposed on services or equipment furnished by telephone companies subject to public utility regulations during any period in which services or equipment are in competition with services or equipment furnished by or available from persons other than telephone companies subject to public utility regulations.
[Amended 1-18-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-1]
In the event that bills shall be rendered for utility services herein stated on a basis other than one month, the tax imposed hereby shall be computed pro rata as if such bill had been rendered on a monthly basis with the rates and minimums herein applied.
Each purchaser of the specified utility service shall pay the tax imposed and levied by this article at the time the purchase price is paid to the seller of the utility service. In the event a purchaser makes a partial payment, the tax must be paid at the time the final portion of the purchase price is paid.
Mobile telecommunications. On purchasers of mobile local telecommunications services provided by a mobile service provider or by retailers of cellular telephone service, the tax shall be in the amount of 10% of the monthly gross charge made by the seller against the purchaser with respect to each mobile local telecommunications service, which tax, in every case, shall be collected by the seller from the purchaser or consumer and shall be paid by the purchaser or consumer to the seller for the use of the County at the time that the purchase price of such charge shall become due or payable under the agreement between the purchaser or consumer and the seller; provided, however, that the tax herein imposed shall not be deemed to apply to that part of the charge in excess of $30 per month made by any seller of such mobile local telecommunications service to any mobile service purchaser or consumer thereof. The maximum monthly levy for such purchasers shall be $3.
[Amended 1-18-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-1]
This tax is imposed or levied on a taxable purchase by a purchaser or consumer of such service if the purchaser or consumer has a service address within Carroll County, Virginia.
It shall be the duty of every seller in acting as the tax collecting medium or agency for Carroll County to collect from the purchaser, for the use of the County, the tax hereby imposed and levied at the time of collecting the purchase price charged therefor, and the taxes collected during each month or billing period shall be reported by each seller to the Commissioner of Revenue of Carroll County, and each seller shall remit the amount of tax shown by this report to have been collected to the Carroll County Treasurer on or before the last day of the first calendar month thereafter, together with the name and address of any purchaser who has refused to pay his tax.
In all cases where the seller collects the price for utility service in stated periods, the tax imposed and levied by this article shall be computed on the amount of purchase during the month to each bill rendered, provided the amount of tax to be collected shall be the nearest whole cent to the amount computed.
The Treasurer of Carroll County will be charged with the power and duty of collecting the taxes imposed and levied under this article.
The Commissioner of Revenue shall prescribe forms of any report or the payment of any funds set forth in this article.
If any person whose duty it is to do so fails or refuses to make the report or remit the tax required by this article within the time and in the amount required, there shall be added to the amount of tax due a penalty in the amount of 10% of the tax, plus interest thereon at the judgment rate, which shall be computed on the tax and penalty from the date such were due and payable.
Each seller shall keep complete records showing all purchasers in Carroll County, which records shall show the price charged against each purchaser with respect to each purchase, the date thereof and the date of payment thereof, and the amount of tax imposed hereunder, and such records shall be kept open for inspection by the duly authorized agents of Carroll County during regular business hours or business days, and the duly authorized agents of Carroll County shall have the right, power and authority to make such transcripts thereof during times as they may desire.
If any seller shall maintain its records at a location other than within Carroll County, Virginia, such seller's custodian shall, upon request of the Commissioner of Revenue, and within 10 days thereafter, personally appear before the Commissioner of Revenue, make available the records specified above, either in written or magnetic form, and respond to proper inquiries from the Commissioner of Revenue.
The United States of America, the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the political subdivisions, boards, commissions and authorities thereof are hereby exempt from the payment of the tax imposed and levied by this article with regard to the purchase of utility services used by such governmental agencies. All volunteer fire departments, volunteer rescue squads, civic clubs and all organizations exempt under § 58.1-3600 et seq., Code of Virginia, are exempt from the payment of the tax imposed and levied by this article. It shall be the responsibility of the County to determine which purchasers are exempt from the tax and furnish such information to the seller.
Any purchaser failing, refusing or neglecting to pay the tax imposed or levied by this article and any seller violating the provisions of this article and any officer, agent or employee of the seller violating the provisions of this article shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Each failure, neglect, refusal or violation and each day's continuance thereof shall constitute a separate offense. Such conviction shall not relieve any person from the payment, collection, and remittance of such tax provided in this article.
Certified copies of this article and all amendments thereto shall be filed in the offices of the County Administrator, the Commissioner of Revenue, the Treasurer, and the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Carroll County, Virginia.
All ordinances or portions of ordinances in conflict with the provisions of this article are hereby repealed to the extent of their conflict. This article hereby repeals and replaces the "Carroll County Utility Tax Ordinance," adopted July 11, 1984, as amended.