- special assessment
- A local assessment; the levy of a burden upon property within a limited area for the payment for a local improvement supposed to be for the benefit of all property within the area. 48 Am J1st Spec A § 3. The word "tax" as it is used in a statute is usually construed to have reference to taxation for general purposes, and not to local assessments. McIlroy v Ugitt, 182 Ark 1017, 33 SW2d 719, 73 ALR 1223. Local assessments do not come within the meaning of the word "tax" as used in the constitutional provision exempting lands of the state from taxation. Re Simpson, 43 Cal 2d 594, 275 P2d 467, 47 ALR2d 991. In their ordinary sense, local assessments are not taxes, but they are taxes in the more general signification that they are a charge put upon property by authority of the lawmaking power. The general distinction is taken between taxes and local assessments that the former are forced contributions levied by the government alike upon all property, for the purpose of raising revenue for the support of the government without reference to the special benefits that will inure to the property thus taxed, while the latter are also forced contributions which are levied by the government, but upon certain particular property, with a view of raising revenue for certain designated purposes, having direct reference to the special benefits that will inure to the property thus taxed. Shreveport v Prescott, 51 La Ann 1895, 26 So 664; Altman v Kilburn, 45 NM 453, 116 P2d 812, 136 ALR 554.
Ballentine's law dictionary. Anderson, W.S.. 1998.