An owner or contract purchaser may apply for current use assessment under the open space law, RCW 84.34 or a designated forestland assessment under RCW 84.33, However, all owners or contract purchasers must sign the application for classification, and any resulting agreement. Application forms are available from the county assessor’s office or from the county planning office.
Applications may be made for classification at any time during the year from January 1 through December 31. Current use or designated forestland valuation assessment begins on January 1 in the year following the year the application was filed for taxes due the following year.
Where to Apply
Farm and agricultural land classification applications are filed with the assessor.
Open Space (Open Space Land) classification applications are filed with the county legislative authority.
Open Space Timberland classification has been merged into the Designated Forestland program, RCW 84.33. Designated Forestland classification applications are filed with the assessor.
There are processing fees to accompany each application. Such fee shall be in an amount that reasonably covers the processing costs of the application.
Assessor Response to Applications
The assessor shall act on each application for classification as farm and agricultural with due regard to all relevant evidence, and may approve the application in whole or in part.
Upon application for classification, the assessor may require applicants to provide data regarding the use of such land, including the productivity of typical crops, sales receipts, federal income tax returns, other related income and expense data and any other information relevant to the application.
The application shall be considered approved unless the assessor notifies the applicant in writing prior to May 1st of the year following the year the application was made.
The assessor shall record an approval of classification with the county auditor for public recording of the tax lien on real property.
Appealing Denial of Farm & Agricultural Application
The owner may appeal the assessor’s denial to the Board of Equalization in the county where the property is located. The appeal must be filed with the board within thirty days after the mailing of the notice of denial.