If most homeowners came away smiling after successfully seeking lower assessments from the firm hired by the city to manage 6,000 appeals, the city's seven assessors were less thrilled with the outcome.
In about one-third of the cases in which they were overturned, the assessors are appealing the appeals. In defense of their original valuations, the assessors have asked the state Tax Commission to review about 1,350 properties that received reductions from the City Council, which acted on the advice of the law firm Frilot LLC.Mom's in the 3rd District: I can't tell if Erroll Williams is appealing every single appeal granted, the website listing the determinations is not longer up. My impression from reading the site was that the majority of appeals were denied. It might be very interesting to see which properties have been appealed, and which haven't been.
Well, here's an answer from the T-P article:
Most assessors said they are appealing only what they view as the most egregious and inconsistent breaks.
"If (the Board of Review) was within 20 percent of where I was, I left it alone," said 3rd District Assessor Erroll Williams, who filed about 725 appeals. "We're only challenging the ones we think are way out of whack."
Property owners have just started to receive notices in the mail warning them of the appeals, and some are vexed by having to go through the process again.
Robyn Halvorsen, a real estate agent who lives in the Bywater and owns several properties there, was annoyed when Williams jacked up some of her assessments by as much as 800 percent. She felt better after winning reductions from Frilot.
Williams has appealed two of the reductions, and Halvorsen can't understand why.
"I know I'm getting screwed," she said. "I know the values better than the assessors. Erroll Williams talks about comparable sales ... if he's using $130 a square foot in Bywater, that's renovated singles with parking and kitchens."
Halvorsen said her properties are different. One is a double that needs a thorough renovation, and the other is in such bad shape it should be torn down.
"It's pretty obvious these are not renovated properties, but he's giving me renovated prices," she said.
For more on this, read Mominem's links. After all this insanity, I wouldn't want to have "cozy relations" with any of the assessors or the consulting firm, except to drag them by their ears out of their offices and out to the properties. Use your eyes, y'all. Isn't that what they are for?