Island Grown Agricultural NetworkFood & Farms in San Juan County

Agricultural Current Use Taxation

The San Juan County Assessor is currently auditing lands that are enrolled in the State Current Use taxation program. State statutes and administrative codes guide implementation of the program:  RCW 84.34  and WAC 458.30.

As you may be aware, over the last year a number of landowners in San Juan County have contacted the San Juan County Agricultural Resources Committee (ARC) with questions regarding the implementation of the Current Use Farm and Agriculture (CUFA) program by the San Juan County Assessor.

Ultimately, in October the ARC contacted the Washington State Department of Revenue (DOR) to request clarification on specific aspects of the implementation of the law.  To respond to this request, the DOR asked that the ARC provide a memorandum detailing landowner experiences and issues that have arisen as the result of recent audits of properties enrolled in CUFA in San Juan County.

The DOR responded in the form of a letter to the San Juan County Assessor addressing the points raised by the ARC, including:

Minimum income requirements for participation in the CUFA program;
Minimum gross income requirements for lands under 20 acres;
Program requirements regarding profit;
Individual 3-year record-keeping agreements;
Eligible acreage (taxable v. legal) and changes in eligible acreage

Pending a meeting with the San Juan County Prosecuting Attorney and the Assessor in January 2013 and due to repeated requests for this information, the ARC has decided to share the DOR’s letter, together with the original memo from the ARC, for the purpose of informing San Juan County landowners and other interested parties of the DOR’s opinion on the points raised by the ARC.

ARC MEMO:            2012_10_9 ARC CUFA Memo to DOR 

DOR RESPONSE:   Zalmanek Charles — San Juan County Current Use Administration

For further information, please contact the ARC.