Karen T. Roundy
(540) 462-3701; fax: (540) 463-4738
The Commissioner of the Revenue is a locally elected Constitutional officer responsible for administering various local taxes. These taxes include:
- Business Personal
- Business License Tax
- Meals Tax (example form*: meals.pdf)
- Lodging Tax
(example form*: lodging.pdf)
- Rental Tax (example form*: short
- Real Estate Tax
(visit VamaNet [Virginia Mass Appraisal Network] for public records)
Estate Tax Relief For the Elderly and Disabled
- State Income Tax www.state.va.us
* These forms must be completed by contacting the Commissioner's office.
The Commissioner of the Revenue’s Office, as a representative of the City of Lexington and the Commonwealth of Virginia, serves our community by:
- fairly, accurately, and in accordance with the law assessing property taxes and administering tax relief;
- providing accurate and useful statistical information with which City officials and community members can make decisions;
- facilitating understanding of applicable tax laws and procedures;
- fairly, but aggressively, administering business taxes; and
- striving to continuously improve ourselves, our organization
and our procedures to better serve the citizens of Lexington.
The Commissioner is responsible for administering the Car Tax Relief program initiated by the State.
Questions & Answers
The following is a list of commonly asked questions concerning personal property tax and vehicle registration requirements.
Aircrafts, automobiles, trucks, recreational vehicles, motorcycles, trailers, mobile homes, business furniture, fixtures, and equipment.
The Commissioner of the Revenue is required by law to assess vehicles by means of a recognized pricing guide. The pricing guides utilized by the City of Lexington are the National Automobile Dealers Association Official used car guide and the official older used car guide. The clean trade in value is taken from these books. If a vehicle is not listed in the guide, the assessment will be based on 85% of the purchase cost. The pricing guide utilized for motorcycles is the National Automobile Dealers Association Motorcycle appraisal guide. The value taken is clean trade in.
The personal property tax rate is established by the Lexington City Council. The tax is figured by multiplying the property’s assessed value by the tax rate. The current personal property tax rate is $4.25 per $100 of assessed value. Mobile homes are assessed as personal property but are taxed at the real estate rate which is currently $.78 per $100 of assessed value.
The City of Lexington is one of several localities in Virginia with the authority to collect personal property taxes on a pro-rated basis. In general terms, a vehicle’s tax will be prorated on a monthly basis based on the number of months it has a situs in the City of Lexington or is owned by the taxpayer.
If you move out of state or into another prorating locality in Virginia or sell your vehicle, you are eligible to have your personal property tax bill prorated. You will receive a refund of taxes paid for the portion of the year your vehicle was not located in Lexington. If you move after January 1 of the tax year to a non-prorating locality you must pay the City of Lexington for the entire year. If you move to a prorating locality in Virginia a credit or refund from the City of Lexington will not be given until our office has verified that personal property tax was paid to your new locality. If you have disposed of your vehicle you must contact our office and let us know who you sold it to and when.
Personal property registrations may be filed by mail or in person at the Commissioner of Revenue’s Office in City Hall. You must register your vehicle with the Commissioner of the Revenue’s office as soon as you garage the vehicle in Lexington.
The first half of Personal property tax bills are due June 5 and the second half are due December 5. Due dates for Tax bills for vehicles registered after April 1st will vary. The Commissioner of Revenue’s office will inform you of the due dates when you register your vehicle.
Effective January 1, 2010, City decals are no longer required.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles and the Commissioner of the Revenue must be notified immediately. This is the responsibility of the citizen, not that of the motor vehicle dealer or new owner.
Under the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Relief Act, active duty military personnel are subject to state and local taxation only in their home of record. If you maintain the City of Lexington as your legal residence you would be liable for personal property tax regardless of where you may be stationed or where your vehicle may be garaged or located during the tax year. If you are in Lexington by virtue of military orders, you would not be liable for personal property tax provided the vehicle is registered in your name only. Any vehicles registered jointly with a non-military member or any leased vehicles would be subject to personal property tax in the City of Lexington. However, if a vehicle is registered in the military person and spouse's name, and the spouse can show proof that he or she has the same domicile as the military person, the vehicle will not be taxed by the City of Lexington. Any service member requesting an exemption from personal property tax will be required to submit a copy of recent leave and earnings statement.
If you are a full-time student attending an institution of higher learning in Lexington and the vehicle is registered in your name only, you would not be liable here if you are paying a personal property tax on the vehicle in your domicile. If the vehicle is registered jointly with or owned solely by a non-student, you would not be liable here if you show proof you are paying a personal property tax on the vehicle in the owner's domicile. If you are a resident of Lexington attending college elsewhere, you are liable for personal property tax here.
If you bring in documentation, i.e. service bill, inspection sheet showing mileage prior to February 1 each year, or bring the vehicle to City Hall for Commissioner's office personnel to verify mileage by February 1 of each year, consideration will be made for high mileage.
All businesses located in the City of Lexington are required to file a Return of Tangible Personal Property, Machinery & Tools form for equipment utilized in the business as of January 1 of the current year. This form must be filed with the Commissioner of the Revenue on or before March 15 each year.
"Equipment” is assessed in the following manner:
“Book Cost” of all business machinery, tools, furniture, fixtures, and other equipment (excluding automotive vehicles) owned January 1, which has not been fully depreciated. Assessment - 25% of property
“Book Cost” of all business machinery, tools, furniture, fixtures, and other equipment (excluding automotive vehicles) owned January 1, which has been fully depreciated.
Assessment - 10% of property
*The rate is $4.25 per $100 of assessed value *The business personal property bill will be mailed the first week of May and the first half payment is due June 5 and the second half payment is due December 5.
All businesses located in the City of Lexington are required to obtain a license. The business license fee is based on gross receipts. To learn more about opening a business in Lexington, please see our brochure. The following schedule is utilized to determine the amount of the business license tax:
General contractors and subcontractors that do not maintain an office in Lexington are required to pay license tax based upon gross contracts in the City when the total of contracts exceed $25,000 - $30.00 or $0.16 per $100 (whichever is greater)
- Retail Merchant
$30 or $0.20 per $100 of gross receipts (whichever is greater)
- Wholesale Merchant
$0.05 per $100 of gross wholesale purchases used for wholesale sales
- Business/personal/repair service
$30 or $0.36 per $100 of gross receipts (whichever is greater)
- Financial/real estate/professional service
$30 or $0.58 per $100 of gross receipts (whichever is greater)
½ of 1% of gross receipts from businesses in Lexington
- Itinerant Merchants or Peddlers
Selling consumable items operating exclusively from a marked motor vehicle - $50.00 per year or $0.20 per $100 of gross sales (whichever is greater)
- Itinerant Merchants or Peddlers
All others not included above - $500 per year
Every business in the City of Lexington is required to levy a 5 percent tax on all prepared edible refreshments, nourishments, and liquids to include alcoholic beverages. The Commissioner will provide the necessary remittal forms which are due on or before the 20th of the following month.
Every lodging establishment in the City of Lexington, offering lodging for compensation, shall impose a 6 percent tax on the total amount paid for lodging. The Commissioner will provide the necessary remittal forms which are due on or before the 20th of the following month.
Every person engaged in the short-term rental business shall collect the rental tax of 1% from the lessee of the daily rental property at the time of the rental. The Commissioner will provide the necessary remittal forms which are due quarterly - ending March 31, June 30, September 30 and December 31.
The City of Lexington contracts to reassess real property every three or four years. The most current reassessment went into effect July 1, 2010. As of July 1, 2012, the tax rate is $0.78 per $100. On July 1, 2013, the rate will increase to $0.83 per $100. A Real Property and/or Personal Property Tax Exemption Information Application must be filed with the Commissioner of the Revenue’s office in order to have property that was not exempted before December 31, 2002 considered for exemption by Lexington City Council. The City of Lexington offers tax exemption on rehabilitated commercial or industrial buildings that qualify. You can view the City of Lexington’s real estate by accessing www.vamanet.com
If you own and are living in your home in the City of Lexington and are 65 years of age or older, or permanently disabled, have a yearly income of $30,000 or less and a net worth of $70,000 or less, you may qualify for Real Estate Tax Relief. Net worth shall exclude the fair market value of the dwelling in which you live.
The Commissioner of the Revenue provides free state income tax assistance to citizens of Lexington in the following areas:
- Free Preparation Of Your Individual Return
If you bring a copy of your Federal tax return and your W-2 forms to our office, we will complete your Virginia return.
- Processing Of Accelerated Refunds
If you qualify for an accelerated refund, our staff will electronically transmit information from your return directly to the Department of Taxation. If the information is within the Department’s guidelines, you will receive your refund in five to seven days from the processing date.
- Taxpayer Assistance
Our office is trained in the most recent tax legislation and will provide information and answer your questions. Also, Virginia individual income tax forms are available in our office.
- If You Mail Your Return
For faster processing remember the following:
- Check your math
- Attach W-2's and required federal schedules
- Sign your return
- Provide your phone number
- File early
- Attach copy of federal return when filing 760PY, 763, or 770 form