Laws, Regulations & Annotations

Property Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2017

Revenue and Taxation Code

Property Taxation

Part 1. General Provisions

Chapter 1. Construction

Section 102

102. Double taxation. Nothing in this division shall be construed to permit double taxation.

Construction.—The mere fact that a business may be required to pay license taxes under the police power of a city under one ordinance and also to pay property taxes for the purpose of revenue under another does not necessarily result in double taxation. Redwood Theatres, Inc. v. City of Modesto, 86 Cal.App.2d 907.

This section prohibits double taxation only with respect to property taxes. Fox Bakersfield Theatre Corp. v. City of Bakersfield, 36 Cal.2d 136; City of Stockton v. West Coast Theatres, Inc., 36 Cal.2d 879. Double taxation occurs only when two taxes of the same character are imposed on the same property, for the same purpose, by the same taxing authority within the same jurisdiction during the same taxing period. Thus, as a matter of law, the imposition of a transit fee on owners of new office buildings as a condition for issuance of a certificate of completion and occupancy did not result in double taxation, since the fee was a development fee, not a tax, since it was charged one time, at the completion of construction of new office space, and did not recur as a property tax, and since it was designed specifically to fund transit maintenance and development. Russ Building Partnership v. San Francisco, 199 Cal.App.3d 1496; Pacific Gateway Assoc. Joint Venture v. San Francisco, 199 Cal.App.3d 1496; Crocker National Bank v. San Francisco, 199 Cal.App.3d 1496; Sacramento Municipal Utility District v. Sonoma County, 235 Cal.App.3d 726.

There was no double taxation of burglar alarm systems assessed against the installer of the systems, as against the contention that the minor components of the systems were fixtures included in the value of the subscribers' realty, where the assessor did not include the value of the systems in appraisals of the real properties and where, although treated as fixtures, the systems were assessed only to the installer/lessor thereof. Morse Signal Devices v. Los Angeles County, 161 Cal.App.3d 570. There was no double taxation of carpeting in a taxpayer's stores, as against the contention that the assessor taxed the carpeting as both part of the structures and as personal property, where the capitalized income method employed by the assessor produced a value for the land and structures exclusive of carpeting and other fixtures, the inclusion of carpeting in the building description section of the assessor's reports was intended merely as a description of the building, and the assessor assessed the carpeting only once as personal property consistent with an assessment practice developed to prevent double assessment of carpeting. May Department Stores Co. v. Los Angeles County, 196 Cal.App.3d 755. There was no double taxation of a commercial rafting company's exclusive and profitable use of a river pursuant to county permit since such property interest is an interest separate from ownership of the land underlying the river. Scott-Free River Expeditions, Inc. v. El Dorado County, 203 Cal.App.3d 896.

There is no violation of the inhibition against double taxation where a taxpayer pays federal income taxes on advances given by the Commodity Credit Corporation on the pledge of his barley crop on which an ad valorem tax is imposed. Burhans v. Kern County, 170 Cal.App.2d 218.

There is a violation of the inhibition against double taxation where the uncontested value of taxable mature trees is added to the value previously determined by the income capitalization formula under which tax-exempt trees have been included. Georgia-Pacific Corp. v. Butte County, 37 Cal.App.3d 461.

Note.—Stats. 1978, Ch. 123, effective May 3, 1978, amended various sections of the Revenue and Taxation Code dealing with the application of taxes between businesses and single-family dwellings. However, the subject bill was conditioned upon the passage of Proposition 8 and the defeat of Proposition 13 in the June 6, 1978 Primary. Based on the fact that Proposition 8 was defeated and Proposition 13 was passed, the amendments proposed by this bill were either repealed or did not become effective.