New Process Targeted at Improving Commercial Appeals Process
***PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT***
NEW PROCESS TARGETED AT IMPROVING COMMERCIAL APPEALS PROCESS
SAN FRANCISCO – In an effort to reduce commercial hearing cancellations before the Assessment Appeals Board, Assessor Carmen Chu announces new processes to ensure taxpayers receive faster service and improve efficiency.
In July, all properties receive an annual notice of assessed value by mail and property owners may contest the value to the independently appointed Assessment Appeals Board (AAB) by September 15th. As the real estate market has rebounded in recent years, commercial property owners have continued to file appeals even without a strong case for temporary reduction under the State’s Revenue and Taxation Code. The result has been cancellations of numerous Assessment Appeals Board hearings where taxpayers do not show up to present their case for property tax reduction.
To minimize the occurrence of costly cancellations, the Office of the Assessor-Recorder is implementing a new process whose goals are to improve efficiency and save taxpayers time. Upon a scheduled AAB hearing, the Office will now proactively notice commercial taxpayers who have the burden of proof on temporary tax reductions to provide information supporting their conclusion ahead of the hearing or attend a pre-hearing conference.
“This new process has three primary benefits. First, it unclogs the schedule for taxpayers who want to make a case and allows for quicker resolution for them. Second, it allows my office the ability to consider information we may not have had when valuing properties before the hearing so that we can conclude a fair value. And third, the process saves my staff time from preparing for cases that are never heard so that we can focus our limited resources in other areas of our work,” explained Assessor Chu.
Recently, the Office requested information from 3,600 open appeals and received notice that 1,400 cases intended to withdraw their appeal, roughly a 39% withdrawal rate.