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Magistrates question sharp increases in some people’s PVA property assessments

Magistrate Keith Metcalfe makes a point during his questions aimed at Barbara Tichenor, the county’s property valuation administrator. Property owners in parts of the county recently received assessments for the property that have, in some cases, more than doubled.

 

By JIM BROOKS
Nelson County Gazette / WBRT Radio

Tuesday, May 15, 2018 — Property Valuation Administrator Barbara Tichenor attended Tuesday’s meeting to explain why the property valuations for some properties in southern Nelson County increased so dramatically.

Nelson County PVA Barbara Tichenor

District 1 Magistrate Keith Metcalfe said that one property owners’ assessment jumped from $93,000 to more than $200,000.

“That’s a hard hit for anyone to deal with,” Metcalfe said.

The new assessments will be used to determine the property tax bills property owners will be sent in the fall. A higher assessment means many of the area’s residents will wind up paying more in taxes.

Tichenor said that property owners have the right to appeal the assessment. The deadline to file an appeal is next Tuesday, May 22, 2018. After that date, no appeal can be filed.

A three-member board (whose members are independent of the PVA office) will hear the appeal. They will evaluate the property assessment and determine its accuracy. Tichenor said the board can lower the assessment, leave it the same, or raise it.

Tichenor explained that parts of southern Nelson County had not been assessed in 10 years. Tichenor said state law doesn’t require her office’s assessments be updated on a specific schedule; however the law does require the PVA to assess property at 100 percent of its market value when it is re-assessed.

Since parts of the county haven’t been assessed in years, many property owners had an unpleasant surprise when they saw a large increase in the assessed value of their property.

“You don’t have to do anything to make your house worth more” when it hasn’t been assessed in the past few years, she explained. Assessing the value of a home depends on a variety of factors, from floor space to interior condition. On the property Metcalfe mention to Tichenor, she said that the property owner had added a large metal shop building and accessory mobile homes, which can combine to increase the property’s value.

Tichenor said the assessments assume the property is in good condition. If that is not the case, she encouraged property owners to come to her office and explain problems with the property. In some cases, an adjustment may be needed.

Metcalfe asked property owners in his district to understand that Nelson Fiscal Court and the magistrates has absolutely no input and no control on the assessments issued by the PVA office. He directed callers with questions to contact Tichenor’s office directly at (502) 348-1810.

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