The exercise of the powers granted by this Act shall in all respects be presumed to be for the benefit of the public, for the increase of their commerce and for the promotion of their health, safety, welfare, convenience, and prosperity, and as the operation and maintenance of any service that the Authority is authorized to provide will constitute the performance of an essential governmental function, the Authority shall not be required to pay any taxes or assessments upon any facilities acquired and constructed by it under the provisions of this Act and the bonds issued under the provisions of this Act, their transfer, and the income therefrom, including any profit made on the sale thereof, shall at all times be free and exempt from taxation by the Commonwealth and by any political subdivision thereof. Persons, firms, partnerships, associations, corporations, and organizations leasing property of the Authority or doing business on property of the Authority shall be subject to and liable for payment of all applicable taxes of the political subdivision in which such leased property lies or in which business is conducted including but not limited to any leasehold tax on real property and taxes on the sale of utility services and local general retail sales and use taxes, taxes to be paid on licenses in respect to any business, profession, vocation or calling, and taxes upon consumers of gas, electricity, telephone, and other public utility services. The Authority shall continue to pay or impute any taxes presently paid or imputed by Bristol Virginia Utilities and to collect and remit all taxes presently collected and remitted by Bristol Virginia Utilities.
2010, cc. 117, 210.