105-278.7. Real and personal property used for educational, scientific, literary, or charitable purposes.

(a) Buildings, the land they actually occupy, and additional adjacent land necessary for the convenient use of any such building shall be exempted from taxation if wholly owned by an agency listed in subsection (c), below, and if:

(1) Wholly and exclusively used by its owner for nonprofit educational, scientific, literary, or charitable purposes as defined in subsection (f), below; or

(2) Occupied gratuitously by an agency listed in subsection (c), below, other than the owner, and wholly and exclusively used by the occupant for nonprofit educational, scientific, literary, charitable, or cultural purposes.

(b) Personal property shall be exempted from taxation if wholly owned by an agency listed in subsection (c), below, and if:

(1) Wholly and exclusively used by its owner for nonprofit educational, scientific, literary, or charitable purposes; or

(2) Gratuitously made available to an agency listed in subsection (c), below, other than the owner, and wholly and exclusively used by the possessor for nonprofit educational, scientific, literary, or charitable purposes.

(c) The following agencies, when the other requirements of this section are met, may obtain property tax exemption under this section:

(1) A charitable association or institution,

(2) An historical association or institution,

(3) A veterans' organization or association,

(4) A scientific association or institution,

(5) A literary association or institution,

(6) A benevolent association or institution, or

(7) A nonprofit community or neighborhood organization.

(d) Notwithstanding the exclusive-use requirements of subsection (a), above, if part of a property that otherwise meets the subsection's requirements is used for a purpose that would require exemption if the entire property were so used, the valuation of the part so used shall be exempted from taxation.

(e) The fact that a building or facility is incidentally available to and patronized by the general public, so long as there is no material amount of business or patronage with the general public, shall not defeat the exemption granted by this section.

(f) Within the meaning of this section:

(1) An educational purpose is one that has as its objective the education or instruction of human beings; it comprehends the transmission of information and the training or development of the knowledge or skills of individual persons.

(2) A scientific purpose is one that yields knowledge systematically through research, experimentation, or other work done in one or more of the natural sciences.

(3) A literary purpose is one that pertains to letters or literature, especially writing, publishing, and the study of literature. It includes the literature of the stage and screen as well as the performance or exhibition of works based on literature.

(4) A charitable purpose is one that has humane and philanthropic objectives; it is an activity that benefits humanity or a significant rather than limited segment of the community without expectation of pecuniary profit or reward. The humane treatment of animals is also a charitable purpose.

(5) A cultural purpose is one that is conducive to the enlightenment and refinement of taste acquired through intellectual and aesthetic training, education, and discipline. (1973, c. 695, s. 4; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 646, s. 15; 2005-435, ss. 59(b), 59(c).)