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for the benefit of the people of this State, subject to such regulations and restrictions as the General Assembly may prescribe, but the General Assembly may, from time to time, define and determine such natural beds, rocks or shoals, by surveys or otherwise.
Sec. 176. The State Corporation Commission shall annually ascertain and assess, at the time hereinafter mentioned, and in the manner required of the Board of Public Works, by the law in force on January the first, nineteen hundred and two, the value of the roadbed, and other real estate, rolling stock, and all other personal property whatsoever (except its franchise and the non-taxable shares of stock issued by other corporations) in this State, of each railway corporation, whatever its motive power, now or hereafter liable for taxation upon such property; the canal bed and other real estate, the boats and all other personal property whatsoever (except its franchise and the non-taxable shares of stock issued by other corporations) in this State, of each canal corporation, empowered to conduct transportation; and such property shall be taxed for state, county, city, town, and district purposes in the same manner as authorized by said law, at such rates of taxation as may be imposed by them, respectively, from time to time, upon the real estate and personal property of natural persons: provided, that no tax shall be laid upon the net income of such corporations.
Sec. 177. Each such railway or canal corporation, including also any such as is exempt from taxation as to its works, visible property, or profits, shall also pay an annual state franchise tax equal to one per centum upon the gross receipts hereinafter specified in section One Hundred and Seventy-eight, for the privilege of exercising its franchises in this State, which, with the taxes provided for in section One Hundred and Seventy-six, shall be in lieu of all other taxes or license charges whatsoever upon the franchises of such corporation, the shares of stock issued by it, and upon its property assessed under section One Hundred and Seventy-six: provided, that nothing herein contained shall exempt such corporation from the annual fee required by section One Hundred and Fifty-seven of this Constitution, or from assessments for street and other public local improvements authorized by section One Hundred and Seventy; and provided, further, that nothing herein contained shall annul or interfere with, or prevent any contract or agreement by ordinance between street railway corporations and municipalities, as to compensation for the use of the streets or alleys of such municipalities by such railway corporations.
Sec. 178. The amount of such franchise tax shall be equal to one per centum of the gross transportation receipts of such corporations for the year ending June the thirtieth of each year, to be ascertained by the State Corporation Commission, in the following manner:
(a) When the road or canal of the corporation lies wholly within this State, the tax shall be equal to one per centum of the entire gross transportation receipts of such corporation.
(b) When the road or canal of the corporation lies partly within and partly without this State, or is operated as a part of a line or system extending beyond this State, the tax shall be equal to one per centum of the gross transportation receipts earned within this State, to be determined as follows: By ascertaining the average gross transportation receipts per mile over its whole extent within and without this State, and multiplying the result by the number of miles operated within this State: provided, that from the sum so ascertained there may be a reasonable deduction because of any excess of value of the terminal facilities or other similar advantages in other states over similar facilities or advantages in this State.
Sec. 179. Each corporation mentioned in sections One Hundred and Seventy-six and One Hundred and Seventy-seven shall annually, on the first day of September, make to the State Corporation Commission the report which the law, in force January the first, nineteen hundred and two, required to be made annually to the Board of Public Works by every railroad and canal company in this State, not exempt from taxation by virtue of its charter, which report shall also show the property taxable in this State belonging to the corporation on the thirtieth day of June preceding, and its total gross transportation receipts for the year ending on that date. Upon receiving such report the State Corporation Commission shall, after thirty days' notice previously given, as provided by said law, assess the value of the property not exempt from taxation, of the corporation, and ascertain the amount of the franchise tax and other state taxes chargeable against it. All taxes for which the corporation is liable shall be paid on or before the first day of December following. The provisions of said law, except as changed by this article, shall apply to the ascertainment and collection of the franchise, as well as other taxes of such corporations. Said taxes, until paid, shall be a lien upon the property within this State of the corporation owning the same, and take precedence of all other liens or incumbrances.
Sec. 180. Any corporation aggrieved by the assessment and ascertainment made under sections One Hundred and Seventy-six and One Hundred and Seventy-eight may, within thirty days after receiving a certified copy thereof, apply for relief to the circuit court of the city of Richmond. Notice of the application, setting forth the grounds of complaint, verified by affidavit, shall be served on the State Corporation Commission, and on the Attorney-General whose duty it shall be to represent the State. The court, if of opinion that the assessment or tax is excessive, shall reduce the same; but, if of opinion, that it is insufficient, shall increase the same. Unless the applicant paid the taxes under protest, when due, the court, if it disallow the application, shall give judgment against it for a sum, by way of damages, equal to interest at the rate of one per centum per month upon the amount of taxes from the time the same were payable. If the application be allowed, in whole or in part, appropriate relief shall be granted, including the right to recover any excess of taxes that may have been paid, with legal interest thereon, and costs, from the State or local authorities, or both, as the case may be; the judgment to be enforceable by mandamus or other proper process issuing from the court finally adjudicating the application. Subject to the provisions of Article Six of this Constitution, the Supreme Court of Appeals may allow a writ of error to either party.
Sec. 181. After January the first, nineteen hundred and three, the system of taxation, as to the corporations mentioned in sections One Hundred and Seventy-six and One Hundred and Seventy-seven, shall be as set forth in sections One Hundred and Seventy-six to One Hundred and Eighty, inclusive; and for that year the franchise tax shall be based upon such gross receipts for the year ending the thirtieth day of June, nineteen hundred and three, and such system shall so remain until the first day of January, nineteen hundred and thirteen, and thereafter until modified or changed, as may be prescribed by law: provided, that, if the said system shall for any reason become inoperative, the General Assembly shall have power to adopt some other system.
Sec. 182. Until otherwise prescribed by law, the shares of stock issued by trust or security companies chartered by this State, and by incorporated banks, shall be taxed in the same manner in which the shares of stock issued by incorporated banks were taxed, by the law in force January the first, nineteen hundred and two; but from the total assessed value of the shares of stock of any such company or bank, there shall be deducted the assessed value of its real estate otherwise taxed in this State, and the value of each share of stock shall be its proportion of the remainder.
Sec. 183. Except as otherwise provided in this Constitution, the following property and no other, shall be exempt from taxation, state and local; but the General Assembly may hereafter tax any of the property hereby exempted save that mentioned in sub-section (a):
(a) Property directly or indirectly owned by the State, however held, and property lawfully owned and held by counties, cities, towns, or school districts, used wholly and exclusively for county, city, town, or public school purposes, and obligations issued by the State since the fourteenth day of February, eighteen hundred and eighty-two or hereafter exempted by law.
(b) Buildings with land they actually occupy, and the furniture and furnishings therein lawfully owned and held by churches or religious bodies, and wholly and exclusively used for religious worship, or for the residence of the minister of any such church or religious body, together with the additional adjacent land reasonably necessary for the convenient use of any such building.
(c) Private family burying-grounds not exceeding one acre in area, reserved as such by will or deed, or shown by other sufficient evidence to be reserved as such, and so exclusively used, and public burying-grounds and lots therein exclusively used for burial purposes, and not conducted for profit, whether owned or managed by local authorities or by private corporations.
(d) Buildings with the land they actually occupy and the furniture, furnishings, books and instruments therein, wholly devoted to educational purposes, belonging to, and actually and exclusively occupied and used by churches, public libraries, incorporated colleges, academies, industrial schools, seminaries, or other incorporated institutions of learning, including the Virginia Historical Society, which are not corporations having shares of stock or otherwise owned by individuals or other corporations; together with such additional adjacent land owned by such churches, libraries and educational institutions as may be reasonably necessary for the convenient use of such buildings, respectively; and also the buildings thereon used as residences by the officers or instructors of such educational institutions; and also the permanent endowment funds held by such libraries and educational institutions directly or in trust, and not invested in real estate: provided, that such libraries and educational institutions are not conducted for profit of any person or persons, natural or corporate, directly, or under any guise or pretence whatsoever. But the exemption mentioned in this sub-section shall not apply to any industrial school, individual or corporate, not the property of the State, which does work for compensation, or manufactures and sells articles, in the community in which such school is located'; provided, that nothing herein contained shall restrict any such school from doing work for or selling its own products or any other articles to any of its students or employees. |)
(e) Real estate belonging to, actually and exclusively occupied, and
used by, and personal property, including endowment funds, belonging to Young Men's Christian Associations, and other similar religious associations, orphan or other asylums, reformatories, hospitals and nunneries, which are not conducted for profit, but purely and completely as charities.
(f) Buildings with the land they actually occupy, and the furniture and furnishings therein, belonging to any benevolent or charitable association and used exclusively for lodge purposes or meeting rooms by such association, together with such additional adjacent land as may be necessary for the convenient use of the buildings for such purposes; and
(g) Property belonging to the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, the Confederate Memorial Literary Society, and the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association of the Union.
No inheritance tax shall be charged, directly or indirectly, against any legacy or devise made according to law for the benefit of any institution or other body or any natural or corporate person whose property is exempt from taxation as hereinbefore mentioned in this section.
Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to exempt from taxation the property of any person, firm, association or corporation, who shall, expressly or impliedly, directly or indirectly, contract or promise to pay any sum of money or other benefit, on account of death, sickness, or accident to any of its members or any other person; and whenever any building or land, or part thereof, mentioned in this section and not belonging to the State, shall be leased or shall be a source of revenue or profit, all of such buildings and land shall be liable to taxation as other land and buildings in the same county, city, or town; and nothing herein contained shall be construed as authorizing or requiring any county, city, or town to tax for county, city or town purposes, in violation of the rights of the lessees thereof existing under any lawful contract heretofore made, any real estate owned by such county, city or town, and heretofore leased by it.
Obligations issued by counties, cities, or towns may be exempted by the authorities of such localities from local taxation.
Sec. 184. No debt shall be contracted by the State except to meet casual deficits in the revenue, to redeem a previous liability of the State, to suppress insurrection, repel invasion, or defend the State in time of war. No scrip, certificate, or other evidence of state indebtedness, shall be issued except for the transfer or redemption of stock previously issued, or for such debts as are expressly authorized in this Constitution.
Sec. 185. Neither the credit of the State, nor of any county, city, or town, shall be, directly or indirectly, under any device or pretence what