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partial tax exemption

Under California’s Sales and Use Tax Law, some sales and purchases are exempt from the state portion of the sales and use tax rate. The total rate is made up of a state component and county, local, and district tax components.

Beginning January 1, 2013.  Rate Change

Under California’s Sales and Use Tax Law, some sales and purchases are exempt from the state portion of the sales and use tax rate. The total rate is made up of a state component and county, local, and district tax components. As a result of the passage of Proposition 30, the state component will increase from 5.25% to 5.50% on January 1, 2013. This means that a sale that was entitled to a 5.25% tax rate exemption prior to January 1, 2012, will be entitled to a 5.50% exemption on an after January 1, 2013.

Eligible Sales and Purchases

The partial tax exemption applies to eligible sales and purchases of


  • Farm equipment and machinery

  • Diesel fuel

  • Timber harvesting equipment

  • Racehorse breeding stock

  • Teleproduction and other post-production equipment

For information on who qualifies for the partial tax exemptions listed above, please visit our website at Select “Sales and Use Tax” under the BOE Programs menu, and then click on the menu item, “New Sales and Use Tax Exemptions-AB 426 Summary.” You may also call our Information Center at 800-400-7115.

Determining the Correct Tax Rate

To determine the correct tax rate for a partial exemption on and after January 1, 2013, you should subtract 5.50% from rate of tax normally due on a sale or purchase. For example, if the tax rate in effect for a sale or purchase is 7.50%, you should subtract 5.50% from that amount to find the correct rate to use, which is 2.00% (7.50% – 5.50% = 2.00%).

Note to Retailers

You do not need to obtain new blanket exemption certificates. Properly completed certificates already on file may be used to support partially exempt sales made under the new rate.

Qualified sales and purchases of farm equipment and machinery, commercial timber harvesting equipment and machinery, diesel fuel for farming activities and food processing, racehorse breeding stock can quality for partial tax exemption.  

Image by Kelly Sikkema

check before you burn And Ag Burn Information


Residents and businesses are prohibited from using indoor or outdoor fireplaces, wood stoves, fire pits and chimneys that burn wood, pellets, manufactured logs or any other solid fuel, when fine particle pollution is forecast to be elevated. It is your responsibility to Check Before You Burn. The Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District will provide daily wood burning messages about burning restrictions in Sacramento County and its cities of Citrus Heights, Elk Grove, Folsom, Galt, Isleton, Rancho Cordova and Sacramento.

Agricultural burning is the burning of agricultural waste material by growers who are producing an agricultural commodity. The agricultural material being burned must come from the same agricultural property it was grown on. Before burning, you must first obtain an annual agricultural burn permit.  

To check the Agricultural Burn Day status, call 279-972-BURN(2876)

taxation issues

Image by Scott Graham

The high cost of doing business in California often puts the state’s farmers and ranchers at a disadvantage. Farm Bureau encourages budget reforms to end excessive government spending and to overturn taxes disguised as “fees.”

Estate Tax

We support full repeal of the estate tax which creates a daily burden for farm families who face steep planning costs. Until repeal can be achieved, we support:

  • Agriculture Exclusion - Efforts to exclude from the estate tax legitimate, long-term farmers and ranchers who intend to continue their operations into the future.

  • Property Valuation - Raising the property valuation amount allowed in § 2032A to match the current $5 million estate tax exemption. This allows farms to value their property at its agricultural use value instead of the market value.

  • Keeping Farms in Production - Providing relief to the transferee of an agricultural estate who is unable to settle a tax bill without selling agricultural land to satisfy the debt.

Mill Assessment

Checking Text on a Document

California assesses a fee on all pesticide sales at the point of first sale into the state. A "mill" is equal to one-tenth of a cent. This assessment is 21 mills, or 2.1 cents per dollar of sales. Revenues support the state’s pesticide regulatory program. The mill assessment program is a self-assessment system. Each quarter, DPR mails reporting forms to pesticide registrants, licensed pest control dealers, and licensed pesticide brokers. Completed forms are due to DPR within 30 days of the end of the quarter.

Pesticide registrants, pest control dealers, and pesticide brokers who first sell a pesticide into or within California must report sales and pay mill assessment fees.

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