Values have been updated for landowners in Seneca County, and while this could mean decreases for many residents, some commercial farmers may experience significant increases.
Seneca County Auditor Julie Adkins provided information on the revaluation which occurs every three years according to Ohio Revised Code during the third annual Seneca Regional Planning Commission Zoning Meeting.
Adkins said in the last three years, Ohio's Department of Taxation revamped formulas used for valuing agricultural land enrolled in the Current Agriculture Use Value program. As a result, taxable values have increased for most soils in the program.
For people enrolled in the CAUV program, the increase could be up to 400 percent of valuation as determined in 2008.
Information on increases in taxation are based on individual property, however a meeting has been scheduled for 7-9 p.m. Sept. 27 at the Department of Job and Family Services conference room, 3362 S. TR 151, with Larry Gearhart, director of local government affairs for Ohio Farm Bureau.
"Larry will explain the changes and tell you that CAUV is still the best thing for you (if you are in commercial agriculture)," Adkins said.
For most residents and agricultural producers not enrolled in the CAUV program, total market value went down 2 percent, although Adkins said there may not be any changes in taxes owed due to levies.
Employees of the auditor's office have been out throughout the year investigating properties for the revaluation, the values of which are to be listed by the weekend on the auditor's website, www.senecacountyauditor.org.
Residents who believe their valuation is incorrect can contact the auditor's office and have their case reviewed by the Board of Revision, a quasi-judicial body which hears property owners' complaints. The board is made up of the auditor, the treasurer and a county commissioner.
David Claus, Seneca County assistant prosecutor, has sat in on meetings since he started working with the county and said the board is professional and works with complainants to solve issues before having to go to a formal hearing.
"The board really does a good job of reviewing every case," he said. "They take it very seriously and review every case individually."
Any changes in taxes due to the new land values are to be included in 2011 taxes payable in 2012.
For more information, call the auditor's office at (419) 447-0692.
On the Web:
Seneca County Auditor's Office