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Stanislaus County
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SB863 Modifications

Contract Length Will Be Reduced from 10 years to 9 years

Landowners Tax Benefits Will Be Reduced by 10%

The California Land Conservation Act of 1965, commonly referred to as the Williamson Act, enables local governments to enter into contracts with private landowners for the purpose of restricting specific parcels of land to agricultural or related open space use. In return, landowners receive property tax assessments which are much lower than normal because they are based upon farming and open space uses as opposed to full market value. Local governments receive an annual subvention of forgone property tax revenues from the state via the Open Space Subvention Act of 1971.

As a result of Governor Schwarzenegger's recent decision to eliminate state financial support for the Williamson Act program, Assemblyman Jim Nielsen introduced AB 2530 in an attempt to find a short term solution to preserve the Williamson Act without using State of California general fund dollars. AB2530, signed by the Governor on September 25, 2010, and subsequently replaced by SB863, signed on October 19, 2010, provides an opportunity for Counties to offset a portion of the loss of Williamson Act Subvention funds by establishing new contracts as of January 1, 2011 which would reduce a landowner's property tax benefits, reduce the term of the Williamson Act contract, and allow increased revenues to be transferred directly into the County's General Fund. It is a temporary solution that sunsets in 2015.

If a contract holder does not wish to participate, then they have the right to exercise the option to non-renew their contract.

Non-Renewal Applications must be filed with the Planning and Community Development Department NO LATER THAN FEBRUARY 1, 2011.

Williamson Act Non Renewal Form

For questions regarding the process to file a notice of non-renewal, please contact the Planning Department at 209-525-6330.



The Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors will be considering implementing SB 863 on November 9, 2010 at 9:10 AM to establish new Williamson Act contracts including reduction of property tax benefits and a related reduction of the term of the contracts to nine years, to be effective beginning calendar year 2011.



A calculator has also been created by the Assessor that can provide an estimate of the property tax you currently save through participation in the Williamson Act and what the estimated difference may be for next year.

Please follow the following link to access the calculator;

(You will need your Assessor's Parcel Number from your latest tax bill to complete the calculator process)

For questions regarding the impact of the new legislation on your property tax, please contact the County Assessor's Office at 209-525-6461.


For additional information regarding the proposed modification, please click one of the following links:

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