Isle of Wight tax assessments down 3 percent

Published 9:46 am Friday, May 21, 2010

ISLE OF WIGHT—Overall real estate values fell about 3 percent in Isle of Wight County, according to the county’s 2010 general reassessment.

Early estimates indicated that the county could see values decline even more in coming years.

“We’re pleased to come in with just a 3 percent decline,” said Gerald Gwaltney, the county’s commissioner of the revenue.

Gwaltney said his office expects to mail reassessment notices today, May 21. Overall residential and commercial assessments are down 4 percent and 2 percent, respectively. The owner of a home previously valued at $200,000 would see a tax-bill savings of about $40 if their assessment dropped 4 percent under the county’s current real estate tax rate of 52 cents per $100 of assessed value.

Agricultural land values are up 1 percent and assessments on multi-family properties, like apartment buildings, shot up 12 percent.

Gwaltney said the increase for multi-family properties is likely due to the method the Board of Assessors used to assess those properties this year.

“It was a new method of assessing based on the income and expenses of those properties rather than actual sales,” he said. “That tends to give a more accurate assessment of the properties.”

Phillip Bradshaw, chairman of the county’s Board of Supervisors, said the numbers have “been a moving target” over the past several months as the board has worked to develop the budget.

He said next year’s county budget was “pretty much finalized” at the board’s last meeting, but the assessment information will be a topic of discussion.

“We’ll take it into consideration and we’ll review it and have a discussion at our meeting next week,” Bradshaw said Thursday.

Gwaltney said he hopes to have a breakdown of values by area of the county soon to see where values decreased or increased.

Property owners wishing to discuss their assessments may meet with the Board of Assessors June 7 through June 16. Anyone wishing to schedule an appointment should call the reassessment office at 242-6225 by June 10.

At its Thursday, May 27, meeting, the Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on the county’s proposed $96.3 million budget for next year. The proposed budget would bump up the personal property tax rate by 10 cents to $4.50 per $100 of assessed value, but hold the real estate tax rate steady at 52 cents. The hearing begins at 7 p.m. at the courthouse complex.