Well, there are a few potential reasons. One possibility is that a property's sales price simply doesn't reflect its actual value.
The goal of Nutter's property- tax overhaul is to assess homes and businesses based on their market value. But Richie McKeithen, the city's chief assessment officer, said that a property's assessment ought to be different from its sales price sometimes.
For instance, he said that it should vary when people have paid less - or more - for a house than it's worth. A home's value also could have changed since it was sold.
A second possibility is that an assessment is just wrong. If a homeowner thinks that his new assessment is off, he can ask the Office of Property Assessment for an informal review.
A third possibility is that the whole reassessment is flawed.
Councilman Mark Squilla said that his office has found hundreds of questionable assessments, including many that are very different from recent sales. He thinks that this may indicate a bigger problem.
He said he's worried "that there's maybe some type of flaw in the process of how this was all done."
At this point, no one has demonstrated through a comprehensive analysis that the new assessments are inaccurate.
- Holly Otterbein, It's Our Money
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