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Thread: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

  1. #1
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    ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    There is an adverse bill afoot, HB878, proposing new taxation of antique vehicles in Virginia. Contact your representative to oppose this bill. While I understand there is a Virginia car club counsel member in AACA, I haven't seen anything about this on the forum. If you don't know who your representative is, go to LIS > Bill Tracking > Members > 2012 session or contact intoldcarz@aol.com

  2. #2

    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    I think the concern is that cars in the process of restoration and unlicensed, or parts cars, could be taxed significantly. I need to read the bill in entirety, but that is what I have heard is the objection.

  3. #3
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    The bill allows local municipalities to tax an unlicensed vehicle stored outdoors up to $500. Vehicles stored indoors are exempt as is any vehicle stored outside for 60 days or less. Junk yards and auto dealers are exempt.
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    I don't live in Virginia but after looking at the Bill in question it appears the final clause exempts from the possibility of being taxed by a municipality any vehicle that would be in the process of being restored.

    "Nothing in this section shall be applicable to any vehicle being held or stored by or at the direction of any governmental authority, to any vehicle owned by a member of the armed forces on active duty or to any vehicle regularly stored within a structure."

    I would presume one's garage qualifies as a structure. It appears all they are wanting to do is give a means for municipal governments to keep junk cars out of view by making it too painful for one to be commonly visible to the public eye. It's a better option than found in many places where one may not even be allowed to have a vehicle under restoration on their premises.


    You should also note the bill only permits local entities to impose the tax if they desire. Doesn't mean everyone in the state is automatically subject to the tax increase.
    Last edited by Jim_Edwards; January 17th, 2012 at 11:15.
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    And the tax is at the discretion of your local municipality. They may impose the full $500 or nothing, at their discretion. It pays to vote.
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Quote Originally Posted by Restorer32 View Post
    And the tax is at the discretion of your local municipality. They may impose the full $500 or nothing, at their discretion. It pays to vote.
    The only problem I see with the bill is that nothing defines the parameters of imposing the tax, or actually fine, with respect to frequency. Is it once a year like vehicle licensing or can it be imposed daily?

    And on second thought, it's really a stupid bill as municipalities anywhere have other means to control inoperable or unlicensed vehicles being parked on the street or in someone's driveway. Obviously Richmond is too close to DC for the Virginia Legislature to logically think about what they are doing!
    Last edited by Jim_Edwards; January 17th, 2012 at 11:31.
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    From Tom Cox AACA National Director Tom Cox of Virginia.



    Virginia Bill Threatens Increased Taxes on Vehicle Restoration Projects


    Legislation (H.B. 878) has been introduced in the Virginia State Legislature by Delegate Mark D. Sickles (DelMSickles@house.virginia.gov) that threatens to provide localities with the authority to raise from $100 to $500 the amount they may charge for an annual license tax for vehicles that do not display current license plates and are not exempted from this requirement. Among the exempted vehicles are parts cars that are stored on private property for fewer than 60 days. However, we believe that this bill represents an opportunity for localities to sidestep local zoning laws that were designed to protect vehicles being restored on private property and incentivizes collection of a substantial tax on owners of restoration projects.
    We Urge You to Contact Members of the Virginia House Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns (List Below) Immediately to Request Their Opposition to H.B. 878
    • H.B. 878 unfairly targets owners of vehicles in the process of long-term restoration as revenue boosters to compensate for state budget shortfalls.

    • H.B. 878 ignores the fact that many vehicles in the process of restoration are owned and maintained by low and fixed income Americans who are less able to afford a higher, annual fee for projects that may take more than 2 months to complete.

    • H.B. 878 dilutes a Virginia law that limits the ability of localities to implement restrictive ordinances preventing automobile collectors from pursuing their hobby. Under the law, at least two inoperable vehicles (or more, if a locality permits) being actively repaired or restored on private property are exempted from any local ordinance if shielded or screened from public view.

    • H.B. 878 allows for an ongoing tax with no basis in the actual value of your vehicle, creating an alternative to the personal property tax from which antique vehicles are currently exempted.
    DONíT DELAY! Please contact members of the House Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns immediately by e-mail to request their opposition to H.B. 878. Please e-mail a copy of your letter to Steve McDonald at stevem@sema.org. Thank you for your assistance.
    Virginia House Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns
    Delegate Riley E. Ingram (Chair)
    Phone: (804) 698-1062 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1062 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelRIngram@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Robert G. Marshall
    Phone: (804) 698-1013 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1013 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelBMarshall@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Daniel W. Marshall III
    Phone: (804) 698-1014 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1014 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelDMarshall@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Salvatore R. Iaquinto
    Phone: (804) 698-1084 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1084 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelSIaquinto@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Anne B. Crockett-Stark
    Phone: (804) 698-1006 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1006 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DELACrockett-Stark@House.virginia.gov
    Delegate Charles D. Poindexter
    Phone: (804) 698-1009 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1009 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelCPoindexter@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Donald W. Merricks
    Phone: (804) 698-1016 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1016 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelDMerricks@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Barry D. Knight
    Phone 804) 698-1081 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1081 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelBKnight@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate James W. Morefield
    Phone: (804) 698-1003 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1003 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelJMorefield@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate James E. Edmunds, II
    Phone: (804) 698-1060 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1060 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelJEdmunds@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Christopher P. Stolle
    Phone: (804) 698-1083 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1083 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelCStolle@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate James M. LeMunyon
    Phone: (804) 698-1067 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1067 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelJLeMunyon@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Tony O. Wilt
    Phone: (804) 698-1026 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1026 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    deltwilt@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Rick L. Morris
    Phone: (804) 698-1064 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1064 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelRMorris@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate M. Keith Hodges
    Phone: (804) 698-1098 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1098 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelKHodges@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Lionell Spruill, Sr.
    Phone: (804) 698-1077 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1077 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelLSpruill@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Onzlee Ware
    Phone: (804) 698-1011 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1011 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelOWare@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Delores L. McQuinn
    Phone: (804) 698-1070 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1070 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelDMcQuinn@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Algie T. Howell, Jr.
    Phone: (804) 698-1090 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1090 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelAHowell@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Scott A. Surovell
    Phone: (804) 698-1044 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1044 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelSSurovell@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Kaye Kory
    Phone: (804) 698-1038 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1038 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelKKory@house.virginia.gov
    Delegate Luke E. Torian
    Phone: (804) 698-1052 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 698-1052 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
    Email:
    DelLTorian@house.virginia.gov


  8. #8
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Give a local government in Virginia the opportunity and the means to impose a new fee or tax, and a dollar to dime says they WILL do it.

    878 may not allow them to tax "old cars" per se, but a bill like this can open the door for more onerous (onerous - definition of onerous by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia. def 2) legislation down the road.

    There's a clause in another statute that prohibits a local government from imposing or collecting a license fee/tax on a vehicle, that is greater than the license fee/tax the state imposes on that vehicle. An unlicensed vehicle is not paying any license fee/tax to the state, so how can a local government try to collect it? This proposed law is opening the door for that.

    I do not mind paying my fair share of taxes, but damned if I'm going to pay more than that without a protest.

    And I find that more and more, legislation coming out of Richmond is not thoroughly considered or vetted prior to being introduced.

    BTW Tom Cox did send out HB878 as an AACA legislative alert a few days ago.
    Glenn Williamson
    AACA Life Member
    Member of all major Olds clubs

  9. #9

    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    I want to thank Dave Henderson for starting this thread relating to Virginia House Bill 878, and I wish to take exception to comments by Drive AG.

    It might be good to have some history first.

    The current House Bill 878 is specifically targeting a previous Bill passed on behalf of hobbyists in the Virginia Legislature in 2004 which requires all municipalities in Virginia to allow the ownership of at least two unregistered vehicles so long as they are screened or otherwise out of public view. This Bill was necessary to stop localities from continually lowering the bar when it came to levying punitive fines etc. and confiscating hobby vehicles that were not eyesores. In some localities public officials were actually entering properties to remove vehicles that were properly screened/stored and were being used for parts or in the process of restoration. At a tax level of only $100 existing Code is not a useful tool to render the resulting code section from the 2004 bill impotent, but at $500 it gives incentive for municipalities to seek out and punish responsible hobbyists who have hitherto been protected by the Bill passed in 2004.


    Jim is correct in pointing out that there are other means by which municipalities can remove objectionable or eyesore vehicles that are in the public view shed. That is the case here in Virginia as there are plenty of code sections that strictly regulate the keeping of junk vehicles. This Bill is not needed for that purpose, and I hate to think what its purpose could be.

    HB 878 patroned by Delegate Mark Sickles (D) of Franconia Virginia should be stopped for many reasons, some of which are as follows:

    Bill HB878 Seeks to undo, through punitive taxation, Bill SB204 passed overwhelmingly several years ago by the House and Senate supporting Virginias Motorsports Hobby, and allowing for the ownership of at least two unregistered hobby vehicles screened or otherwise out of public view.

    HB878 seeks to discourage participation in the Motorsports hobby by disproportionately penalizing the ownership of legal private property through taxation in an arbitrary and capricious manner.

    HB878 Will unfairly burden and prevent families of modest means from participation in the automotive hobby as well as preventing those with financial hardship from the time honored tradition of working on ones own vehicle.

    HB878 is a job killer in an already difficult time. Given that HB878 will discourage the restoration, building, and repair of vintage, race vehicles, and basic transportation it will negatively impact struggling independent businesses such as automotive body and paint shops, upholstery shops, machine shops, and general repair shops. Additionally this Bill will have a negative impact upon the sale of aftermarket repair parts worth millions of dollars in the Commonwealth, which will impact state sales tax revenues in a negative manner.

    At best HB878 is a disingenuous attempt to utilize punitive taxation at the local level for the purposes of enacting de facto zoning restrictions. It is a deceptive and flagrant misuse of the tax system.

    Existing laws already give localities the right to police and prevent public eyesores and the keeping of junk vehicles.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    One other potential issue is the setting of precedence. Currently, to my knowledge no locality in Virginia utilizes the current Code Section. However, once the "tax" increases to $500, I would expect that to change as localities do everything possible to generate revenue. This would likely place yet another target on our hobby.

    Unfortunately, our tax exempt status for antique vehicles in Virginia has come into question many times by various Commissioners of the Revenue who are mining for dollars. It would be terribly naive to think that they would not be aware of potential revenue which could come with the passage of HB878...after all, they have a state association that meets regularly to determine policy and additional ways of sourcing tax income. Consequently, this could place more attention on the potential for more revenue if there is an opportunity to maneuver around our current tax exempt status in much the same legal yet deceptive manner the $500 tax is a zoning effort by way of a "tax".

    In my humble opinion it is the height of irresponsibility to refer to requests to stop this Bill by SEMA and others as "fear mongering" as Drive AG purports. It is Bills like HB878, which allowed to pass without opposition, that will initiate more regulation and taxation to the detriment of our hobby. Apathy and lack of action seldom bring forth anything positive from any legislature. Please fight this Bill.

    Tom Cox

    PS I am a lifelong resident of Virginia and have been intimately involved with every pro hobbyist law enacted in this state for the past twenty years, including our tax exempt status. I have also worked with many organizations to fight or repeal anti hobbyist legislation in over thirty states. I am anything but a "fear monger". Believe me, if you give your legislators and regulators an inch they will surely take a mile.

  10. #10
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Mr. Cox has been a long time advocate for the hobbyist in Virigina and elsewhere. I know he is concerned about this bill and has asked for Virigina car people to call or write their congressman but not to use any form letters to do this.
    Antique Automobile Club of America
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    If there is one thing I have learned in my 20+ years as a small (very small) town Councilman it is that every coin has 2 sides. You can look at this issue as an attack on those wanting to keep and restore vehicles but you can also look at it as motivated by a desire among the citizenry to remove junky vehicles from sight. At least in PA it is virtually impossible to force someone to move an unlicensed, uninspected vehicle from their private property unless a case can be made that it impacts public health. As I read the bill one can avoid this "tax" simply by moving the offending vehicle inside. All in all though, I agree with the above poster, it's just one more step down that "slippery slope".
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  12. #12
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    I live in Virginia, and tax issue aside, the one thing that I'd like to see addressed is not the law, but the enforcement of the law, regarding antique vehicle license plates.

    I regularly see 1970's and 1980's work trucks, with antique tags on them, being used for work and/or general transportation. The owners are thus avoiding tax and inspection on those vehicles.

    I regularly drive my 1969 Cutlass, and made a decision not to play that game. It has regular license plates, and gets inspected yearly, and I feel safer for it.

    As far as tax on antique vehicles, it's going to happen at some point, it is personal property with a value, and just a matter of time before a bill gets passed to capture those tax dollars. If your house is 25 years old or older, you pay tax on it, and the same's going to be true of vehicles, in those states that have personal property taxes.

    No reason not to fight it, of course, but you know what they say about death and taxes....
    David Coco
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  13. #13
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Vis a vis current Virginia antique car taxation restrictions versus what will surely happen if these COR's get their wish (and they have an ally on Cities, Counties and Towns who has created increased fee legislation for us in the past ) , if it happens I would hope we'd follow North Carolina's lead. Antique registered vehicles are taxable in NC, but tax value is capped by state statute at $500 per car.

    What scares me is that, given that power, all these local revenue offices would automatically try to value and then tax an antique vehicle at the maximum value for a #1 car, or worse by these artificial auction prices. And all without regard for real-world value of the car or its condition. City of Danville tried that mess 20 years ago and taxes on my 73 Olds convert increased by nearly 1100%. A friend had a 67 Camaro that was barely a good parts car and he got socked with a tax bill for a #1 grade car. Even after showing the tax office pictures of said Camaro he finally had to threaten to get a lawyer to get the tax bill reduced to what it should have been.

    Slippery, dangerous slope, my friends. It's like a rat- if the rat's head gets thru the hole, the whole rat can get thru it.

    Lord forbid any local government should learn to live within its means.
    Glenn Williamson
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  14. #14
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Well said Tom.
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    David, until the local DMV offices stop suggesting to owners of 25+ year old cars that their vehicles qualify for the plates, the AQ/AV plate abuse will not stop. You cannot fault the owner for registering the car as an antique, once they hear the benefits of such registration.

    That's why I challenged the sponsor of that last antique plate legislation ON HIS OWN TURF (he "represents" my Virginia House District) as to why he felt the new fees and restrictions were necessary when the ones we had were not enforced, and truth be known were very low priority work for most LE departments.

    All I got for an answer was typical politician babble and doublespeak. In truth, they created a problem where none existed, and did nothing but increase bureaucracy and aggravation for the average "true" old car owner.

    Did I mention the financial projections from that bill? Nine million $$ in additional state revenue? Can't convince me it wasn't more about revenue than about getting questionable antique plates off the road.

    HB878 is designed to accomplish the same thing.
    Glenn Williamson
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  16. #16
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    Re: ALERT... ALERT... Virginia members

    Knowlegeable responses above. We in Virginia are fortunate to have the well informed on our side. keep this in the limelight.... Act!

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