Code Section

* California Constitution - CONS


ARTICLE XIII TAXATION [SEC. 1 - SEC. 36]
  ( Article 13 added Nov. 5, 1974, by Prop. 8. Res.Ch. 70, 1974. )

  
SEC. 3.  

The following are exempt from property taxation:

(a) Property owned by the State.

(b) Property owned by a local government, except as otherwise provided in Section 11(a).

(c) Bonds issued by the State or a local government in the State.

(d) Property used for libraries and museums that are free and open to the public and property used exclusively for public schools, community colleges, state colleges, and state universities.

(e) Buildings, land, equipment, and securities used exclusively for educational purposes by a nonprofit institution of higher education.

(f) Buildings, land on which they are situated, and equipment used exclusively for religious worship.

(g) Property used or held exclusively for the permanent deposit of human dead or for the care and maintenance of the property or the dead, except when used or held for profit. This property is also exempt from special assessment.

(h) Growing crops.

(i) Fruit and nut trees until 4 years after the season in which they were planted in orchard form and grape vines until 3 years after the season in which they were planted in vineyard form.

(j) Immature forest trees planted on lands not previously bearing merchantable timber or planted or of natural growth on lands from which the merchantable original growth timber stand to the extent of 70 percent of all trees over 16 inches in diameter has been removed. Forest trees or timber shall be considered mature at such time after 40 years from the time of planting or removal of the original timber when so declared by a majority vote of a board consisting of a representative from the State Board of Forestry, a representative from the State Board of Equalization, and the assessor of the county in which the trees are located.

The Legislature may supersede the foregoing provisions with an alternative system or systems of taxing or exempting forest trees or timber, including a taxation system not based on property valuation. Any alternative system or systems shall provide for exemption of unharvested immature trees, shall encourage the continued use of timberlands for the production of trees for timber products, and shall provide for restricting the use of timberland to the production of timber products and compatible uses with provisions for taxation of timberland based on the restrictions. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to exclude timberland from the provisions of Section 8 of this article.

(k) $7,000 of the full value of a dwelling, as defined by the Legislature, when occupied by an owner as his principal residence, unless the dwelling is receiving another real property exemption. The Legislature may increase this exemption and may deny it if the owner received state or local aid to pay taxes either in whole or in part, and either directly or indirectly, on the dwelling.

No increase in this exemption above the amount of $7,000 shall be effective for any fiscal year unless the Legislature increases the rate of state taxes in an amount sufficient to provide the subventions required by Section 25.

If the Legislature increases the homeowners’ property tax exemption, it shall provide increases in benefits to qualified renters, as defined by law, comparable to the average increase in benefits to homeowners, as calculated by the Legislature.

(l) Vessels of more than 50 tons burden in this State and engaged in the transportation of freight or passengers.

(m) Household furnishings and personal effects not held or used in connection with a trade, profession, or business.

(n) Any debt secured by land.

(o) Property in the amount of $1,000 of a claimant who—

(1) is serving in or has served in and has been discharged under honorable conditions from service in the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, or Revenue Marine (Revenue Cutter) Service; and—

(2) served either

(i) in time of war, or

(ii) in time of peace in a campaign or expedition for which a medal has been issued by Congress, or

(iii) in time of peace and because of a service-connected disability was released from active duty; and—

(3) resides in the State on the current lien date.

An unmarried person who owns property valued at $5,000 or more, or a married person, who, together with the spouse, owns property valued at $10,000 or more, is ineligible for this exemption.

If the claimant is married and does not own property eligible for the full amount of the exemption, property of the spouse shall be eligible for the unused balance of the exemption.

(p) Property in the amount of $1,000 of a claimant who—

(1) is the unmarried spouse of a deceased veteran who met the service requirement stated in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection 3(o), and

(2) does not own property in excess of $10,000, and

(3) is a resident of the State on the current lien date.

(q) Property in the amount of $1,000 of a claimant who—

(1) is the parent of a deceased veteran who met the service requirement stated in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection 3(o), and

(2) receives a pension because of the veteran’s service, and

(3) is a resident of the State on the current lien date.

Either parent of a deceased veteran may claim this exemption.

An unmarried person who owns property valued at $5,000 or more, or a married person, who, together with the spouse, owns property valued at $10,000 or more, is ineligible for this exemption.

(r) No individual residing in the State on the effective date of this amendment who would have been eligible for the exemption provided by the previous section 11/4 of this article had it not been repealed shall lose eligibility for the exemption as a result of this amendment.

(Subdivisions (o), (p), and (q) amended Nov. 8, 1988, by Prop. 93. Res.Ch. 68, 1988. Other Sources: Entire Sec. 3 (except subdivision (k)) was added Nov. 5, 1974, by Prop. 8; Res.Ch. 70, 1974. Subdivision (k) was added Nov. 5, 1974, by Prop. 6; Res.Ch. 77, 1974, third resolved clause.)