Assessor sets info sessions

Published 8:41 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The city real estate assessor’s office will hold a series of presentations later this month to help residents understand their assessments and the assessment process.

City Assessor Jean Jackson said it is the first time to her knowledge that such sessions have been held.

“I think the public needs to be aware of what the steps are for if you disagree with your assessment, or even if you agree with it and find there’s some property characteristics that are not correct,” Jackson said.


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Staff from the assessor’s office will describe how assessments are calculated, important dates to know in the process, options for property owners who disagree with their assessments and the types of exemptions.

Jackson said programs like historic tax credits; relief for elderly, disabled and veterans; land use and agricultural exemptions; religious and nonprofit organizations; and others will be up for discussion and questions.

“It’s to educate the public,” Jackson said.

She said the public generally has a few misconceptions about assessments. One of them is the difference between how assessors go about valuing property in comparison to how it is valued for financing or refinancing.

Another is that many people don’t realize they can ask questions about their assessment at any point during the year. They can even get incorrect items on their property card corrected for the following year. But there’s only a certain amount of time in which they can file a formal appeal of this year’s assessment.

“If they have an issue, they can come in at any time, and we can address it for the next fiscal year,” Jackson said.

The session schedule is as follows:

  • Jan. 19, 6 to 7 p.m., Creekside Recreation Center, 1000 Bennetts Creek Park Road
  • Jan. 21, 1 to 2 p.m., East Suffolk Recreation Center, 138 S. Sixth St.
  • Jan. 26, 6 to 7 p.m., City Council Chambers at City Hall, 442 W. Washington St.

Light refreshments will be served at the sessions. For more information, call the assessor’s office at 514-7475.