The Accomack County Board of Supervisors took a step Wednesday to reward EMS and Volunteer fire personnel for their service to the County.

The Board  approved an amendment to Chapter 82 of the Accomack County Code that would allow for a special tax classification for one motor vehicle owned or leased by members of volunteer fire departments or volunteer EMS agencies.

The special classification would reduce the tax rate on the affected vehicles to one cent per $100 valuation.  The State allows localities to levy a tax on such vehicles  at a different rate from the tax levied on other tangible personal property but states that the tax rate cannot be zero.

The Board voted to approve the change effective January 1, 2023  with the following stipulations.

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The volunteer must regularly respond to emergency calls.

If a member of a volunteer EMS agency, the individual needs to provide to the Commissioner of Revenue’s office certification by the chief of the EMS agency that the individual meets the definition of “emergency services personnel”  in Virginia Code Section 32.1-111.1.

If a member of a volunteer fire department, the individual must annually provide the Commissioner of Revenue with a certification by the chief of the volunteer fire department that the individual is a member of the volunteer fire department who regularly responds to calls.

The action was not anticipated in the FY 22-23 budget.  The annual estimated cost is $123,550 of which $61,775 will be applied to the current budget.  The money will initially come from the Budget Contingency fund but will become a budgeted item in subsequent annual budget.