Kentucky has had a tax on property since June 1, 1792, the date the State was created.
The Department of Revenue was created in 1936 to administer all state taxes.
In 1965 the Kentucky Court of Appeals ruled in the Russman vs. Luckett case that the full cash value standard must be adhered to.
The Department of Revenue was changed to the Revenue Cabinet in 1982. The Department of Property Taxation (renamed the Department of Property Valuation) was created. The department is comprised of the Commissioner’s Office plus three divisions:
- State Valuation
- Local Valuation
- Technical Support
The Revenue Cabinet is one of the administrative agencies of the Executive Branch of State Government.
In 1990 the General Assembly as part of the Kentucky Educational Reform Act (KERA) mandated that all real property be assessed at 100% of Fair Cash Value.
Property tax is an ad valorem tax, which means according to value.
Real Property includes all lands within this state and improvements thereon.
Personal Property includes every species and character of property, tangible and intangible, other than real property.
Tangible Personal Property includes automobiles, construction equipment, manufacturing machinery, merchandise, livestock, and furniture and fixtures.
Intangible Personal Property includes property which has no intrinsic value such as bonds, mortgages, notes, and accounts receivable.
The Kentucky Constitution provides two key directives in the structure of the Property Tax System. One is that all property not specifically exempted by the Constitution itself is taxable. The other is that all property must be assessed at Fair Cash Value.
Two amendments were passed to lessen the tax burden on certain groups of property owners: the Agricultural Deferred Value Amendment and the Homestead Exemption, which was broadened to include totally disabled homeowners