Thursday, May 21, 2009

So Much For The Rhetoric About "The Importance Of FUNDING The Education Of Our Children" Amongst These Dekalb County Property Tax Payers

95,000 in DeKalb to get lower assessment

I am NOT claiming that the demand for reappraisal of property values by the government is unique to Dekalb County. It is not. It is happening in many places as the market value of the underlying property declines for a number of reasons.

MY ARGUMENT is that, after all of these years in which we have heard that PROPERTY TAXES are an unfair (and racist) means of funding local school systems because of the imbalance in the tax digest between various counties - this situation right hear shows that among these citizens of Dekalb County - the funding of their local school system is not in the top 5 list of their concerns.

All of this provides me an opportunity to communicate my theory about FUNDING YOUR OWN BEST INTERESTS.

I am of the opinion that YOUR BEST INTERESTS need to be pushed to the periphery. A group of people are going to make certain decisions that allow them to end up at a certain destination. Some of these destinations will be favorable. Some other groups will be lead to a suboptimal location. Yet and still - IT WAS THEIR CHOICE based on that which they PRIORITIZED.

What better way to improve a people than to allow them to be made aware of the IMPORTANCE of their actions and thoughts and then impress upon them to promote some actions and suppress others? From this a CULTURE is crafted and this culture can be communicated to the next generation due to the empirical evidence that has been provided as to its worthiness.

The people of Dekalb County had a chance to VOTE WITH THEIR DOLLARS on the fund of their schools. They chose to keep the money in their own pockets. (Do you see why the promises of Obamanomics is so popular? SOMEONE ELSE is going to be taxed and YOU will receive more benefit.)

It is strange how people seek to MAXIMIZE the valuation of their homes when it comes to their relationship with the bank. The more that it is worth the more they can sell it for or obtain a Home Equity loan against.

On the "put out" side - the more this home is worth, the more the TAX MAN is going to get his share of the proceeds.

All of this valuation is largely "funny money" anyway.

Where are the community activists who proclaim that OUR SCHOOLS NEED MORE MONEY if they are to compete with the 'lily White suburbs'?

The key difference is that when it does come to this funding gap - those who argue this point want THESE OTHER PEOPLE to "share" their proceeds from taxes collected so that they get nothing but net gain out of the situation.

How does a PEOPLE progress with this sort of short sightedness?

DeKalb County’s efforts to correct its tax values for 2009 roll out today with the mailing of about 100,000 tax revaluations — this time taking foreclosures into account.

Tax officials say the do-over will benefit thousands of property owners across the county who will see their county tax appraisals, and possibly their tax bills, fall in reaction to the ongoing real estate slide.

DeKalb’s first mailing, last month, did not include distressed sales despite a new state law requiring that such sales be used in setting values for 2009.

The first mailing, tax officials said, lowered values on about 13,500 parcels. This one will drop the assessments on 95,000.

“The number of sales we included in our sales ratio studies doubled when we included distressed sales,” said Hank Ruffin, interim chief appraiser.

Ruffin said at least 40,000 properties will fall by more than 25 percent.

“It’s safe to say the southern part of the county took the biggest hit,” Ruffin said. “The northern part was not affected as much. That’s no surprise.”

The work completed by DeKalb assessors over the past 30 days has sliced the county’s tax digest by more than $1 billion and means local governments across DeKalb will be forced to account for lower values in setting their tax rates for 2009-10.

Also, the new values will land this week in the hands of wary residents, some of whom got notices last month they felt didn’t go far enough and more whose property values didn’t get lowered but felt they should have.

“I’m concerned and skeptical,” said Trey Glover, who lives in East Atlanta. “I really don’t think they are going to be sending me anything. But they should. If they don’t send me a notice, I’m going to be overpaying.”

Glover did not get a notice from DeKalb when assessors mailed out about 28,000 notices for 2009 last month. The county has his home valued at $350,100. Glover said he’s been trying to refinance, and banks say it’s worth about $50,000 less. He has no right to challenge the value unless he gets a notice in this round.

“The banks obviously think the values have come down,” Glover said.

For those who do get notices, they next must decide whether DeKalb assessors accurately reflected the market as of Jan. 1 or failed to lower taxable values enough. Those who don’t likely will appeal and challenge the county to lower values even more. Appeals must be filed by June 19.

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