April Guest Column - “Two little departments with a huge impact”

Posted on March 23, 2023 in: Guest Column

April Guest Column - “Two little departments with a huge impact”

Can you believe we are already in the month of April?  April is a very important month for the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office. Specifically, the date of April 1st. Our Tangible Personal Property (TPP) and our Geographic Information System (GIS) departments both have a statutory deadline of April 1st. Let's dive into these departments a little more and find out why this is such an important date to our office.

First, let's talk about our TPP department. The TPP department is responsible for tracking all tangible personal property which is everything used in a business other than inventory and items of real estate. TPP is also known as business personal property. This includes machinery, equipment, furniture, fixtures, signs, supplies, leased equipment and furnishings in rental units.

In 2008, Florida voters passed Amendment 1, which includes a $25,000 exemption for certain tangible personal property. To be eligible for this amazing exemption, a return must be filed by April 1st.  If your tangible personal property is less than $25,000, you are still required to file an initial return.  Taking the time to file for this exemption could save you and your business hundreds of dollars. 

Many new businesses might not have any idea what a TPP return is or that they are required to file one. Florida State Statute 193.052 requires that all tangible personal property be reported by our businesses, big or small, each year to the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office. We often get a few questions each year about the TPP return. “What if I missed the April 1st filing deadline?” “I am no longer in business. Should I still file a return?” and “If I buy or sell an existing business during the year, who is responsible for the TPP taxes?” Well, let's answer those questions for you.

“What if I missed the April 1st filing deadline?” We request that you still submit your TPP return. Failure to file a return could result in penalties, loss of exemption, and an estimation of assets.  I definitely don’t want that to happen to you so please take the time to fill out the application for this exemption. 

“I am no longer in business. Should I still file a return?” Yes. If the business closes, changes owners or moves please file a CC-405 TPP tax return to notify us of the change in status.  If you don’t have access to this form please let us know and we will help you locate one. 

If I buy or sell an existing business during the year, who is responsible for the TPP taxes?” The answer to that question is whoever is in possession of the assets/equipment. The taxes follow the tangible property. Tangible taxes are rarely pro-rated at closings.

Now that you are more familiar with our TPP department and its April 1st deadline, let’s move forward with our second department that also follows an April 1st deadline which is our Geographic Information System department.

A Geographic Information System or GIS is a collection of personnel, computer hardware, software and geographic data for capturing, storing, analyzing and displaying data. GIS is not only a computer system that produces maps, GIS is used to analyze geographic data and display the results in the form of a map.

The GIS system also doubles as a parcel ownership database that has been developed to assist the appraisal staff in deriving just value. Secondly, it has been developed to aid in the location and identification of individual properties.

On or before April 1st our office must submit our GIS map data to the Florida Department of Revenue per Florida Statute 193.1142.  If our maps are not approved we can not move forward with the certification of our tax roll. In preparation for this deadline our staff continuously maintains the public land survey system lines, parcel lines, lot lines, block lines, easement lines, right-of-way lines, hydrographic lines as well as jurisdictional and municipal boundary lines.

Our GIS department has a small staff but a huge impact on our tax roll. They work countless hours to make sure that our maps are right where they need to be. When out in the community, we receive positive feedback about our mapping system and that is a direct result of the hardwork and dedication of this department.  Just like the rest of our staff I am very proud of their hard work. 

If you have any questions about our TPP or GIS departments please don’t hesitate to contact us at (352)-341-6600.  Make sure to follow us on Facebook at @CitrusCountyFLPropertyAppr. This month on our various social media platforms we are continuing on with our monthly department dedications and we will be talking more about our GIS department.   Until next time, it’s a great day to have a great day. 

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