Counties’ Right to Appeal Centrally Assessed Property Valuations

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Arie Van De Graaff from the Utah Association of Counties went before Emery County Commissioners on Tuesday for a centrally assessed property presentation.

The legislature held its first interim day of 2014 on May 21. One of the issues discussed was the Revenue and Taxation Interim Committees consideration of the issue of appeals to centrally assessed property valuation.

The issue was what role the counties should have in the appeal process after a centrally assessed property has been assessed. As of now, property owners and counties have a right to appeal a tax commission valuation. Representatives from centrally assessed owners argued that counties should not have that right and that by doing so, the counties create too much uncertainty in the process. The UAC fears what the future may hold with the counties out of the way.

Emery County has a larger portion of locally assessed versus centrally assessed property.

Currently, the local option sales tax is collected by the tax commission and remitted to the taxing entities through a formula of 50% at point of sale and 50% population.

At this month’s interim meeting, the committee considered a proposal to alter the 1% local option sales tax. The option is used primarily for cities but it is also collected in the unincorporated county.

The UAC is looking for support to prevent this from happening through legislation. Van De Graaff stated that the UAC is just reaching out to counties so they are aware of what is happening and that they are trying to protect homeowners and taxpayers.

Commissioners support what UAC is attempting to do but decided to table the discussion until the UAC decides what form of support they need from the counties.

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