July 10, 2019
Theresa Galvin, Chairman
Legislator – 6th District
Jackson County Legislature
415 E. 12th Street, 2nd Floor
Kansas City, MO 64106
Dear Ms. Galvin:
The Commissioners would like to express their appreciation for you commitment to the County and your interest in the reassessment process. They asked me to respond to your letter to avoid any appearance of impropriety in their capacity as the determiner of all questions and disputes involving assessments after determination by the County’s Board of Equalization pursuant to Section 138.430 RSMo.
Reassessment occurs each odd-numbered year with the assessor making determinations of value as of January 1. An assessor is required to perform a physical inspection before increasing an assessed valuation of residential property by more than 15%, excluding increases due to new construction or improvements. Section 137.115.10 RSMo. After the assessor completes reassessment the assessor provides notification to the property owner of the increase in value and the projected tax liability likely to result from the increase.
The assessor in Jackson County has completed reassessment. Property owners were notified of the increase. Property owners are currently meeting with the assessor to discuss their assessments. If after their meeting with the assessor, they are not satisfied the assessment reflects true value, the property owner may appeal to the county board of equalization.
Every increase in assessed valuation made by the assessor “shall be subject to review by the county board of equalization whereat the landowner shall be entitled to be hear.” Section 137.180 RSMo. The county board of equalization determines all appeals from the valuation of property made by the assessor. Section 138.060 RSMo. Appeals to boards in first class counties are due before the third Monday in June; provided that the board may, in its discretion, extend the time for filing such appeals. Section 137.385 RSMo. The board in Jackson County exercised their discretion and extended the time for filing such appeals. The deadline to appeal to the Jackson County Board of Equalization has not expired.
Appeals are not due to the State Tax Commission until September 30th or thirty days after the decision of the board of equalization whichever is later. Section 138.430 RSMo. “Every owner of real property or tangible personal property shall have the right to appeal from the local boards of equalization to the state tax commission…concerning all questions and disputes involving the assessment against such property, the correct valuation to be placed on such property, the method or formula used in determining the valuation of such property, or the assignment of a discriminatory assessment to such property.” Section 138.430 RSMo.
The Missouri Statutes provide a process for not only determining the true value of property, but also due process to contest the determination of true value. Jackson County property owners are availing themselves to the process by meeting with the assessor. Property owners who are unable to resolve the issues with the assessor may file an appeal with the board before the extended deadline.
Disputes regarding assessments are currently being considered by the assessor. The property owners disputing their assessments may not resolve the dispute regarding their assessment with the assessor and appeal to the county board of equalization prior to the expiration of the extended deadline. The property owners who appeal to the board may seek to have the issues determined by the State Tax Commission. The Commissioners cannot make determinations of issues until the matters are before them and provide all parties with an opportunity for a fair hearing. Sections 138.430 and 138.431 RSMo.
The State Tax Commission makes every effort to see that assessments comply with all provisions of the law. The prime objective of the State Tax Commission is to assure a fair and uniform assessment based upon market value.