Arkansas Court of Appeals Recognizes Challenge to Property Tax Assessment on Mineral Rights

The Arkansas Court of Appeals recognized the validity of a taxpayer's challenge to the valuation of mineral rights in SWN Production Company (Arkansas), LLC V. Stobaugh, 2021 Ark. App. 324 (September 8, 2021). The opinion, which reversed the circuit court's dismissal of the valuation challenge, continues the trend of limiting authority of Assessment Coordination Division (ACD) guidelines and is also notable for recognizing that a valuation challenge no longer involves deference to the assessor. [More]

Buy Computers and Phones Tax Free: Expanded Sales Tax Holiday Coming Up August 7-8

Arkansas consumers in the market for computers, tablets, smartphones, and printers should consider buying this coming weekend, August 7-8, as the state's customary sales tax holiday has been expanded to include these electronic devices. Individuals and even businesses may even be interested in doing some buying on the weekend to take advantage of the temporary tax exemption. [More]

Arkansas Tax Appeals Commission Nominating Process Open for CPA Commissioner

With Arkansas having enacted an independent Tax Appeals Commission that will begin taking cases in 2023, the next step is to find potential commissioners. The three commissioners need to be named by the governor from shortlists provided by stakeholder groups: the Arkansas Supreme Court will shortlist three names for the chief commissioner (lawyer and CPA), the Arkansas Society of Certified Public Accountants (ARCPA) will shortlist three names for the CPA commissioner, and the Arkansas Bar Association will shortlist three names for the lawyer commissioner. ARCPA has moved quickly and interested CPAs need to apply by August 6. [More]

DFA Assessment Coordination Division Proposes Property Tax Exemption Rules Requiring Every Exempt Parcel to Reapply

The Assessment Coordination Division (ACD) of the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration has proposed rules on tax exemption determinations as mandated by Act 819 of 2019. The rules would require every exempt parcel to reapply for exemption in 2023, and the draft exemption application would require a large amount of information to prove entitlement to the exemption. The rules do not provide substantive guidance about what kinds of uses of property should or should not qualify for exemption. The deadline for comments on the proposed rule is May 31, and a hearing on the proposed rules will be held June 1. Interested parties should consider participating in the rulemaking process. [More]

Arkansas Supreme Takes Expansive Reading of Manufacturing Exemption for Pipemaker's Steel Grit

The Arkansas Supreme Court upheld the sales and use tax manufacturing exemption for steel grit used to make pipes in Walther v. Welspun Tubular, LLC, 2021 Ark. 90 (Apr. 22, 2021). This case provides significant clarification of (1) the plant expansion exemption, (2) the articles of commerce requirement, and (3) the continuing utility of equipment requirement. As such, it should be of interest to almost all manufacturers. The positions on each of these issues that were upheld by the court are broader than what the Department of Finance and Administration (DFA) generally has allowed. Arkansas manufacturers should consider whether they can benefit from applying these principles to their own tax situations. [More]