Food processors exemption
The 2013 Oregon Legislature reinstated the property tax exemption for certain types of property acquired and installed by Oregon food processors (ORS 307.453) by the passage of HB 2735. The program allows food processors to request a property tax exemption for qualified real property machinery and equipment, and personal property. The Bill provides this tax exemption for food processors engaged in the business of processing, repacking, freezing, canning, dehydrating, concentrating, or preserving raw or fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, legumes, or seafood for human consumption before the point of the first sale by the processor. In 2015, House Bill 3125 amended the M&E Certification program to include grains, eggs, bakery products, and dairy products; and permitted the ODA to assess, fix, and collect, or cause to be collected, fees on food processors for the certification of qualified machinery and equipment.
The following are examples of equipment and machinery that may qualify:
- Sorting equipment
- Filling equipment
There are special requirements to claim an exemption for qualified property:
- Certifications for Machinery and Equipment certification must be completed before the last day of February in any calendar year. Submissions for Machinery & Equipment certification after the last day of February will result in a late fee.
For property first put into service during the calendar year of 2015, the filing process for claiming exemption will require filing the completed exemption claim with the county assessor or the Department of Revenue, whichever appraises the property.
Procedures and forms
- Complete the required Department of Revenue (DOR) listing form(s), which can be found below under Resources. If you have any questions about applying for exemptions, contact DOR at 503-378-4988 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Print the completed Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) request for machinery and certification which can be found below under Resources. If you have questions about this form, contact ODA.
- Fax or mail the completed ODA certification request form(s) along with the DOR exemption form(s) to the ODA Food Safety Program.
- An ODA Food Safety Specialist will contact your firm to set up an appointment to visit your facility to conduct the certification of the machinery and equipment. At this time you will be informed of the estimated fee for the certification process. A representative from your firm who is familiar with the machinery and equipment on the list must be present to accompany ODA personnel through the plant and identify each piece of qualified machinery and equipment for exemption certification.
- After inspection, the ODA Food Safety Specialist will leave the signed original certification(s) with your firm for you to submit to DOR. You also will make two copies for the ODA Food Safety Program.
- The ODA Food Safety Specialist will generate a bill for the M&E certification process. If you elect to pay through an invoicing system, please contact the ODA Accounts Receivable office at 503-986-4592. Upon payment the ODA will submit the completed forms to DOR. These fees are outlined in the Oregon Administrative Rules and the link is available at the bottom of this document and in general include: a standard application fee, charge of service, travel time, mileage; and if applicable, lodging and per diem as per rates established by the Department of Administrative Services.