The city of Terre Haute is set to lose as much as two-to-three million more dollars in property tax revenue after the county’s assessments came in 7 percent lower than last year. The head of the state’s assessor’s association says a change in the state’s overall assessment process may be partly to blame.
Vigo County finished its assessments later than most counties – getting data to the state just before the end of 2012. So leaders now have less time to plan for where to find the missing cash.
Terre Haute Mayor Duke Bennett says the calculations have left experts perplexed and officials trying to avoid blame.
“The assessors – I just read in the paper today where they believe that they’ve done a good job and the numbers are the numbers,” Bennett says. “Yet when I talk to a tremendous amount of realtors, very well-respected realtors in our community, appraisers in our community, they’re all saying ‘this just doesn’t make any sense.’”
Monroe County Assessor Judy Sharp is the president of the Indiana County Assessors Association. She says the late date at which the numbers were submitted may be indicative of problems in the county, but adds new assessing tables from an unknown company the state contracted with to calculate values for each county in Indiana may also be responsible.
“That’s basically a couple, a state guy and a vendor they hired, and they contracted with some company out of California, Craftsman, that no one had even heard from,” Sharp says.
Sharp says the onus falls on each county assessor to stay up-to-date with assessing data and minimize any negative impact from whatever numbers the state sends back each year.