Township Property Revaluation Could Come Next Year

Hundreds of Washington Township residents have appealed their taxes, costing the town hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Washington Township officials are planning to have a revaluation of township properties performed due to a large number of tax appeals, but the work will not be able to be done this year, officials said this week.

Township Tax Assessor Ray Damiano recently sent letters outlining the township's criteria to appraisal companies who expressed interest in doing the work, but none of them are available for this year, according to Administrator Catherine Navarro-Steinel.

The change in property values would not take place until 2014 at the earliest, Navarro-Steinel said. Because the state must review the revaluation, the appraisals must be done by October of the year before the changes take effect.

The township's last revaluation was done in 2006.

Since 2010, . The number of appeals has increased each year. This year alone, 271 township property owners appealed their taxes, drawing $322,000 out of the town's budget.

The township lost about $168,000 from 105 tax appeals in 2010 and $194,000 last year from 117 tax appeals.

Most of the appeals have been coming from condo owners rather than houses or commercial properties, township attorney Kenneth Poller previously said.

Mayor Janet Sobkowicz previously estimated the revaluation could cost as much as $300,000.

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Jim Leggate at Jim.Leggate@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Concerned September 27, 2012 at 01:34 PM
I agree we should reduce spending but no one in government seems willing. (We should fix that) but B&B you should realize that the revaluation will just level the playing field.
Kelly Van Rijn September 28, 2012 at 02:57 AM
If you want to make up those lost tax revenues, fire a few cops. Good lord, they make way more than NYPD cops only to have to patrol the mean streets of Washington Township. Well, when not chasing kids who 'loiter' whilst eating ice cream outside of the Dairy Queen. Or better yet, fire some of the WTPD brass. It's not like they have a full plate, either. Just doesn't seem fair to keep whacking the property owners. Heck, nobody gives us raises to keep paying for all these tax increases.
Kelly Van Rijn September 28, 2012 at 03:02 AM
I agree with B&B. A couple of years ago, the Twp reappraised all the houses. While the average appraised home value more than doubled, the Twp DID NOT cut the tax rate by a proportionate amount. The net effect was an increase in the total tax bill. Why would we expect the mayor and council not to screw the taxpayer again? And seriously, do you think any of the high priced town employees will be cut? Heck no. How about this? Grandfather in all the DPW guys, and hire contractors going forward. Sooner or later somebody in charge has to think about the taxpayer.
B@B February 22, 2013 at 08:12 PM
This is kind of late, but here's why those who successfully appealed will be penalized. When I appealed, the tax rate was $1.88 per $100 of assessed value. Let's say for the sake of argument that your house was assessed at $500K before the appeal. That's a $9400 tax bill. Now say you did an appeal that resulted in a market value of, oh, say, $420K (because the county won't touch an appeal unless the drop is more than 15%). At $1.88/$100, that's a new tax bill of $78.96. Now let's say that with the revaluation, your hose is reassessed at $420K, but in order to keep the revenue stream the same, the town has to raise the rate to, say, $2.60 per $100 of assessed value. Your new tax bill will be $10,920. So you will not only have a dramatic tax increase from your "appealed" assessment, but also from your pre-appeal assessment. This example is a reasonable one that many homeowners can expect with this revaluation. If you didn't appeal, you MAY see a reduction or a smaller increase. But if you did win an appeal, you are totally scr3wed.
B@B February 22, 2013 at 08:12 PM
Sorry...that $78.96 should have been $7896/year.


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