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SN 95(16)

1995 Legislative Changes Affecting the
Motor Carrier Road Tax

PURPOSE: The purpose of this Special Notice is to summarize the legislative changes to the motor carrier road tax made during the 1995 Session of the Connecticut General Assembly.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: Conn. Gen. Stat. §12-478, as amended by 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 35; Conn. Gen. Stat. §12-486a, as amended by 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 26, §24; and Conn. Gen. Stat. 12-489, as amended by 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 26, §25.

EFFECTIVE DATE: 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 35 is effective January 1, 1996. 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 26 is effective July 1, 1995 and is applicable to taxes due and owing on or after that date, regardless of whether those taxes first became due before July 1, 1995.

DEFINITION OF "MOTOR CARRIER": In 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 35, the General Assembly modified the definition of motor carrier under Conn. Gen. Stat. §12-478 so that motor carriers are only those persons who would be treated as carriers under the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) if they operated their vehicles in interstate commerce.

Effective January 1, 1996, a motor carrier is "every person, firm or corporation which operates or causes to be operated on any highway in this state any qualified motor vehicle . . . "

QUALIFIED MOTOR VEHICLES: 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 35 also provides a definition of a qualified motor vehicle, effective January 1, 1996. A qualified motor vehicle is a motor vehicle that is used, designed or maintained for transportation of persons or property and that:

(A) has two axles and a gross vehicle weight or registered gross vehicle weight exceeding 26,000 pounds; or

(B) has three or more axles regardless of weight; or

(C) is used in combination and the combined gross vehicle weight or registered gross vehicle weight exceeds 26,000 pounds.

However, a qualified motor vehicle does not include a recreation vehicle that is used exclusively for personal pleasure, and is not used in connection with any trade or business, by an individual.

IDENTIFICATION MARKERS: 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 35, §2 also modifies Conn. Gen. Stat. §12-487 by providing, as of January 1, 1996, for the issuance of two identification markers to be affixed on the lower rear exterior of each side of the cab.

REDUCED PENALTY AND INTEREST: 1995 Conn. Pub. Acts 26, §§24 and 25 amend Conn. Gen. Stat. §§12-486a and 12-489, respectively. Effective July 1, 1995, the rate of interest to be paid on deficiency assessments is reduced from 1 1/4 % to 1% per month or fraction thereof. Also effective July 1, 1995, the rate of interest payable by the Department, if the tax has been paid prior to taking an appeal to the superior court, and, if the court orders the tax to be refunded and orders interest to be paid thereon, has been reduced from 9% per year to 2/3 % per month or fraction thereof.


EFFECT OF THIS DOCUMENT: A Special Notice is a document that announces a new policy or practice in response to changes in State or federal laws or regulations or to judicial decisions. A Special Notice indicates the Department's informal interpretation of Connecticut tax law and may be referred to for general guidance by taxpayers or tax practitioners.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: To order forms and publications or for further information, call the Department of Revenue Services at 860-297-5962 (Hartford area or out-of-state) or 1-800-382-9463 (in-state). Forms and publications may be ordered through voice-mail 24-hours a day by choosing Option 3 on your touch tone telephone.

Electronic Delivery Options: You can also obtain tax forms and publications 24-hours a day from our Web home page at Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD/TT) users only call 860-297-4911 during business hours.

SN 95(16)
Motor carrier road tax
Issued: 10/4/95