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NEWS
By John W. Freceand M. Dion Thompson and John W. Freceand M. Dion Thompson,Annapolis Bureau of The Sun | February 13, 1991
ANNAPOLIS -- The Schaefer administration wants to charge a $25 fee to homeowners who appeal their property assessments to their local Property Tax Assessment Appeal Board, the second stage of the state's appeals process.An initial appeal by a property owner -- the bulk of appeals made regarding assessments -- could still be made for free.Craig C. Biggs, administrator of the Maryland Property Tax Assessment Appeal Board, said the fee is needed to raise enough money to pay those who sit on the appeals board hearing what has become an unprecedented number of property assessment appeals.
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BUSINESS
By Natalie Sherman and Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | December 27, 2013
Home values in Baltimore rose more than 4 percent in the most recent round of property assessments, one of the largest increases in Maryland as the state saw some overall growth for the first time in five years. In the Baltimore region, average home values also grew in Howard and Anne Arundel counties but fell in Carroll, Harford and Baltimore counties. Statewide, residential values rose slightly - by 1.3 percent - while commercial assessments climbed 16.3 percent since 2010, when this group of properties was last considered.
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NEWS
By Joel McCord | December 7, 1990
Angry homeowners raised such a ruckus over their sharply increased property assessments last January that they forced changes in state laws designed to soften the impact of those ballooning values on tax bills.Now, as a new round of higher assessment notices is mailed throughout the state, the question becomes: Will they do it again?Not likely, say the leaders of tax revolts in Anne Arundel and Montgomery counties.After losing battles over local tax caps, property owners have begun to realize that they should focus on government spending rather than assessments, said Robert R. Denny, head of Montgomery County's Fairness in Taxation.
BUSINESS
By Steve Kilar and The Baltimore Sun | February 1, 2013
Do you think the property tax assessment you recently received is too high? Interested in filing an appeal of your assessment? On Tuesday, Live Baltimore is hosting a session where homeowners who just received assessment notices can learn how to file an appeal. Property owners who would like to contest their new assessment have until Feb. 11 to do so. The workshop will run from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the nonprofit's storefront office, 343 N. Charles St., and an employee of the state's Department of Assessments and Taxation will be on hand to answer questions.
NEWS
By Marina Sarris and Marina Sarris,Evening Sun Staff | December 6, 1990
Beginning next week, more than 600,000 property owners in Maryland will receive reassessment notices from the state assessments and taxation department and will be facing an average increase of 9.5 percent starting July 1.That cold fact is hardly welcome news to homeowners who might have assumed that a slowing real estate market would translate into a lower property assessment when the state tax notice arrived.Marylanders whose home or other property was reappraised by the state this year will see the 9.5 percent assessment increase TC for each of the next three years, slightly below the 10 percent cap on annual increases adopted by the 1990 state legislature.
NEWS
January 5, 1996
MARYLAND'S LATEST round of real property assessments represents more bad news for city and county budget officials. The average increase of 1.3 percent in property values statewide means that local governments will have to look to other revenue sources to finance their budgets, or make further cuts.Stagnating property values are the flip side of nearly a half-decade's worth of disinflation. Leading up to the 1990s, local budget officials could count on property values rising at rates that were close to double digits.
NEWS
By Laura Cadiz and Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF | November 16, 2003
The Alliance for a Better Columbia is urging the Columbia Council to rebate $8.7 million from surplus revenue to property owners now, making up for high assessment payments stemming from skyrocketing home values. ABC, a citizens watchdog group, is also lobbying the Columbia Association to avoid further surpluses by operating a balanced budget. "They use a budgeting procedure that's unheard of," said Joel Pearlman, an ABC spokesman. Pearlman told the council Thursday that the $5.7 million surplus the association had for fiscal year 2003 should be refunded to all property owners to the extent that they overpaid to contribute to the surplus.
NEWS
By Josh Mitchell and Josh Mitchell,SUN STAFF | January 8, 2003
Leaders of a Federal Hill homeowners group, angry over the prospect of paying thousands of dollars more in property taxes, are urging appeals of the state's latest assessments of their homes. About 200 residents of the neighborhood met last night in a mostly informational session at Holy Cross Church on East West Street. "Our goal is to have more fairness in the assessment process," said Kirsten Sandberg, president of the Federal Hill South Neighborhood Association. "We want to send the message to assessment officials and to city legislators that there needs to be uniformity [in property assessments]
NEWS
January 6, 2002
WHAT RECESSION? Maryland property values are soaring, according to the latest state assessments, with the sharpest jump in nearly a decade. Homeowners may cheer the presumable increase in their fortunes. But the taxman cometh. With an average increase of 5.3 percent in property assessments over each of the next three years, that should mean higher tax revenues for the state and counties. The most important implication is the resilience of the statewide economy and the continued strong demand for housing in most parts of the state.
NEWS
By Laura Cadiz and Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF | March 16, 2004
A House of Delegates committee unanimously approved yesterday a bill that aims to offer financial relief to Columbia residents by imposing a 10 percent cap on rising property assessments in the planned community. But the Environmental Matters Committee killed another bill that would allow two-thirds of voting property owners to amend the Columbia Association's covenants. Now, the association's covenants can be amended only by unanimous approval of property owners. "I am pleased that the cap bill came out without amendment," said Del. Shane E. Pendergrass, who drafted both bills.
BUSINESS
Jamie Smith Hopkins | September 14, 2012
If you're sure your property is worth less than the state says it is, you might want to contest it. This heads up is brought to you by RG Steel, which struck a deal -- after several years of appeals -- that reduces its taxes on the Sparrows Point steel mill by about $830,000. Odds are, you're not in a position to save quite that much. But it's a helpful reminder nonetheless. A rundown of the Sparrows Point situation , in case you're curious: RG Steel filed for bankruptcy in May, so cash-strapped that it estimated it had more than 1,000 creditors -- Baltimore County among them.
BUSINESS
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | September 10, 2012
RG Steel is asking for U.S. Bankruptcy Court approval for a settlement with Maryland that lowers its Sparrows Point property assessment, reducing its Baltimore County bill for the past three tax years. The steel mill owner calculated in a court filing that its tax bill would fall about $830,000 for the 2011 tax year. It didn't note the effect for previous years. RG Steel said it won a $34 million reduction on the property's 2009 assessed value - to just under $204 million - in Maryland Tax Court in August.
BUSINESS
Jamie Smith Hopkins | July 10, 2012
It looked so odd: Two sets of homeowners in Howard County seemed to be getting property-tax credits that added to their bill, rather than subtracting. When I stumbled upon them in a database of Howard property taxes that we'll (fingers crossed) have online for you all to search later this month, I stared blankly at the pair. It had to be a mistake, right? Right. Howard County officials, investigating after I inquired, said the stealth tax labeled as a homestead credit was a miscalculation by the state Department of Assessment and Taxation that got by the county's finance department.
BUSINESS
Jamie Smith Hopkins | May 9, 2012
What the state doesn't know about your property could hit you in the tax bill. That's why it's a good idea to call the state Department of Assessments and Taxation and request your property " worksheet ," which gives details about the land and improvements that assessors use every three years to revalue your home or business property. Once you have it in hand, you can take a look and see if anything's amiss. A nonexistent building, say. That's what happened to one of Tom Kimmitt's clients.
BUSINESS
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | March 2, 2012
Harford County homeowner Roy Whiteley, a vocal critic of the state's property assessment process, has been pushing for years to get a bill passed that would put in place a task force to review the system and suggest improvements. He's hoping the seventh time is the charm. The bill, proposed annually since 2006, is one of several this year aimed at the state Department of Assessments and Taxation. Whiteley, testifying Friday in Annapolis, used so many adjectives to describe his feelings about the current system — including "archaic," "biased," "broken" and "flawed" — that he drew chuckles from House Ways & Means Committee members.
NEWS
January 30, 2012
To our knowledge, The Sun's newsroom staff has received no special training in tax assessment and record keeping, yet reporters armed with no more than foot leather and personal computers seem to have a gift for uncovering gross errors - more charitably known as "discrepancies" - in Baltimore's property tax records. First, it was the abuse of the Homestead Tax Credit, both legal and not, that has likely cost the city substantial sums in tax breaks given to properties that weren't eligible for the cap on assessment increases.
NEWS
By DAN BERGER | January 10, 2001
Flu shots don't work. At least one didn't. Ashcroft for attorney general of the Confederacy. Rumsfield is backup vice president, insurance against Cheney's overburdened heart. Most of the Caninet are problem-solvers. Linda Chavez was meant to cause problems. For unions, not for George. There are 281,421,906 of us, in case you were wondering why property assessments are up.
NEWS
By Laura Cadiz and Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF | March 21, 2004
The House of Delegates has approved a bill that would impose a 10 percent cap on rising property assessments in Columbia. The bill, passed in a unanimous vote Friday, aims to offer financial relief to Columbia residents. It now heads to the Senate. "Whoopee!" exclaimed Del. Shane E. Pendergrass, a co-sponsor of the bill, after the House vote. " ... I'm feeling that a unanimous vote is a strong message. I'm really pleased." The proposed legislation would limit the impact of sharply rising state property tax assessments on the unique charge that the Columbia Association imposes on its property owners - which is based on property values.
EXPLORE
January 3, 2012
Real estate values in Harford County appear to have stabilized with the most recent state re-assessment of the Route 40 corridor. Though residential property values were down 10 percent compared to what they had been in the previous assessment, that valuation estimate was conducted just as the economy was beginning to tumble. An overall decline of 10 percent in assessed value, though a substantial decline, reflects an adjustment that is in keeping with the latter days of the real estate boom.
NEWS
By Nicole Fuller, The Baltimore Sun | May 26, 2011
Annapolis Mayor Joshua J. Cohen plans to raise $2 million through a property tax increase, paired with a $2.8 million package of spending cuts — including a hiring freeze and cuts to nearly all city departments — to balance his proposed $86.2 million budget for next fiscal year. The plans announced Wednesday were the result of an agreement between Cohen and a majority of the city council, many of whose members criticized his budget proposal when it was introduced in March. Initially, the plan included a 7.6 percent spending increase over the previous year and would not have changed the property tax rate.
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