After 22 years, Pine Plains considers property reval
PINE PLAINS â€” Property revaluations are costly and anxiety-provoking, but theyâ€™re also necessary, according to Pine Plains town Supervisor Gregg Pulver.
â€œThis has been a topic the Town Board has talked about at least for three years now. Itâ€™s a very tough decision to do,â€ he said. â€œThere are all the financial ramifications to the town. A reval is very expensive and thereâ€™s the concerns of the public in doing a reval. So weâ€™ve been very cautious and mindful that there are a lot of pitfalls to be avoided.
â€œThe good news about procrastination in this case is that weâ€™re in a much more stable real estate environment now,â€ he added. â€œWeâ€™re not seeing crazy numbers up or down now, and we weathered a lot of storms here. I think now the reval would not only be more realistic but also stand the test of time.â€
The supervisor added the town is ready with RFPs (Request for Proposals) to go out to as many different vendors as possible. Heâ€™s hoping those RFPs will get the go-ahead at the board meeting in November.
The goal of a reval, Pulver stressed, is equity. One of the reasons Pine Plainsâ€™ inventory is down is because the town has not had its property assessed in more than two decades.
â€œWeâ€™re at approximately 44 percent equalization right now,â€ Pulver said, adding that there were a variety of issues that contributed to the roll getting â€œa little bit out of whack.â€
The state encourages municipalities to reach a 100 percent equalization rate and stay there. It offers incentives, like a $5 per parcel payback, to municipalities that maintain full equalization rates.
The townâ€™s plan, at this point, is to involve, inform and educate the public throughout the whole process, which is just at the very beginning stages at this point.
The issue was brought up and discussed at the October Town Board meeting, where Kathy Myers of Dutchess County Real Property Services spoke about recent valuation standards adopted statewide. Myers spoke about the parameters of a townwide reval, and the terminology. She also brought the town up to speed on true value assessments to make sure everybody is on the same page.
â€œKathy is a wealth of information and her thing is the nuts and bolts of this,â€ Pulver said, adding the goal of assessors is to treat everyone fairly and equitably. â€œShe told us only a few towns have not done revals recently.â€
In fact, only six of 22 municipalities in Dutchess County have not conducted property revaluations recently.
Pulver said not to worry, and that there will be plenty more conversations on the subject in the future.
â€œWe have a history of being very open and will continue that with the reval, and as soon as thereâ€™s more information available we will keep passing it along,â€ he said. â€œI would expect the work to start next year.â€