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A. Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed as imposing a tax upon:
1. Any person or service, if imposition of such tax upon that person or service would be in violation of a federal or California statute, the Constitution of the United States or the Constitution of the State of California;
2. The city;
3. Any individual 60 years of age or older, who uses communication, electric, gas, or water services; in or upon any premises occupied by such individual; provided the total adjusted gross income of that individual, as used for purposes of the California Personal Income Tax Law, was no more than $18,200 for the most recent completed calendar years; and provided the combined adjusted gross income of all members of the household in which such individual resided was no more than $21,500; or
4. Any individual who meets the criterion of disability, as established by the Social Security Administration's Supplemental Security Income Program for the Aged, Blind, and Disabled (Title XVI of the Social Security Act, as amended), without regard to the age of such disabled individual.
B. The exemptions granted by this section shall not eliminate the duty of the service supplier from collecting taxes from such exempt individuals, or the duty of such exempt individuals from paying such taxes to the service supplier; unless an exemption is applied for by the service user and granted in accordance with the provisions of this section.
C. Any service user exempt from the taxes imposed by this subchapter because of the provisions of subsection A. above, may file an application with the Tax Administrator for an exemption. Such application shall be made upon a form supplied by the Tax Administrator; and shall state those facts, declared under oath, that qualify the applicant for an exemption.
D. The Tax Administrator shall review all such applications, and shall certify as exempt those applicants determined to qualify therefor; and shall notify all service suppliers affected that such exemptions have been approved. For each exemption, the following information shall be transmitted to the service supplier:
1. Name of exempt applicant;
2. Account number shown on utility bill;
3. Address to which exempt service is being supplied; and
4. Any other information as may be necessary for the service supplier to remove the exempt service user from its tax billing procedure.
E. Upon receipt of such notice, the service supplier shall not be required to continue to bill any further tax imposed by this subchapter from such exempt service user, until further notice by the Tax Administrator is given. The service supplier shall eliminate such exempt service user from its tax billing procedure no later than 60 days after receipt of such notice from the Tax Administrator.
F. All exemptions shall continue and be renewed automatically by the Tax Administrator, so long as the prerequisite facts supporting the initial qualification for exemption shall continue; provided, however, that the exemption shall automatically terminate with any change in the service address or residence of the exempt individual; further provided such individual may nevertheless apply for a new exemption with each change of address or residence.
G. The Tax Administrator shall have the power and right to demand evidence of continued eligibility of a service user for exemption under the provisions of this section. Such evidence may include, but need not be limited to, copies of business records, letters or statements from the Social Security Administration, copies of income tax returns, and such other evidence concerning the service user or other members of his or her household as may tend to prove or disprove such eligibility. Failure to provide such evidence as is within the control of a service user to so provide, either directly by him or her, or by his or her consent, or the consent of a member of his or her household, when such evidence is requested of the service user in writing by the Tax Administrator, shall be grounds for the immediate discontinuance of the service user's eligibility for exemption under the provisions of this section. Evidence provided to the Tax Administrator, upon request or voluntarily provided by the service user without request, may not be used against such service user as evidence of violation of the provisions of this section; such evidence may only be used as grounds for termination of the exemption herein provided.
H. Any individual exempt from the tax shall notify the Tax Administrator within ten days of any change in fact or circumstance that might disqualify him or her from receiving such exemption. It shall be a misdemeanor for any person to knowingly receive the benefits of the exemptions provided by this section, when the basis for such exemption either does not exist or ceases to exist.
I. Notwithstanding any of the provisions hereof, any service supplier who determines by any means that a new or nonexempt service user is receiving service through a meter or connection exempt, by virtue of an exemption issued to a previous user or exempt user of the same meter or connection, such service supplier shall immediately notify the Tax Administrator of such fact; and the Tax Administrator shall conduct an investigation to ascertain whether or not the provisions of this section have been complied with, and where appropriate, order the service supplier to commence collecting the tax from the nonexempt service user.
J. Any individual entitled to be exempt from the taxes imposed by this subchapter, who used communication, electric, gas, or water services and paid more than $3.00 in such taxes, may, during the calendar year following such payment, apply for a refund thereof, on forms provided by the Tax Administrator. Refund applications shall contain a declaration of those facts, under oath, that qualify the applicant for a refund, and shall be accompanied by the customer's bills showing the amount of such taxes billed by service supplier during the preceding calendar year. Refund claims may be filed by an individual who used communication, electric, gas, or water services and paid the taxes prescribed by this subchapter, either directly or indirectly to the service user rather than the service supplier. In the event the applicant has lost or destroyed any relevant billings or statements showing the amount of tax paid, or if the applicant indirectly paid such taxes in conjunction with the occupation of premises without receiving a specific billing therefor from the service user, the maximum refund shall be $48.00, or $4.00 for each full month of services received by the applicant, whichever is less.
K. If the Tax Administrator determines that an application for exemption is faulty, or that the applicant has failed to truthfully set forth such facts, the application for the exemption shall be denied in writing to the applicant. The applicant shall thereafter have a right to file an amended application for exemption; or to appeal the Tax Administrator's decision to the City Manager within a ten-day period after the mailing date of the Tax Administrator's rejection. In the case of an appeal, the City Manager shall review the facts in consultation with the City Attorney, and shall render a final determination on such appeal.
L. Upon request of the Tax Administrator, a service supplier, or its billing agent, shall provide a list of the names and addresses of those customers that, according to its billing records, are deemed exempt from the utility users’ tax.
('65 Code, §§ 33B-8, 33B-18) (Ord. No. CS-621 § 1 (part); Ord. No. CS-671 § 1; Ord. No. CS-727 § 1; Ord. No. CS-771 § 1; Ord. No. CS-812 § 1; Ord. No. CS-820 § 1; Ord. No. CS-879 § 1; Ord. No. CS-887 § 1; Ord. No. 86-004 § 1; Am. Ord. No. 2000-001§ 1 (part); Ord. No. 2001-010 § 1; Ord. No. 2006-009 § 22 (part); Ord. No. 2008-007½ § 9)