Dysinger outlines major assessment changes

January 10, 2019

By Pat Maurer

Supervisor Dan Dysinger reported that ““The agenda was light at Tuesday’s Township Meeting.”

Dysinger outlined some major changes in future property tax assessing including a requirement for local units to have online access to records available; a requirement for a comprehensive Policy of Accessability to the local unit assessors office; State Tax Commission additional audit requirements; broader powers to the STC to enact changes in promulgated rule making; intent language included to provide funding from the State to implement the changes, which unfortunately is optional from the State.

Dysinger said, “Regarding the funding for the costs to implement the new rules, the State is recommending that local units assess or levy the administrative fee to offset the costs – a 1 percent fee which can be levied on property tax bills.” He said that Grant Township doesn’t currently levy this fee, but that will change at some point.

“This is a watered-down version of what was originally proposed by the Michigan Treasury,” Dysinger said. “The sweeping changes were agreed with by the Michigan Department of Treasury, the Michigan Municipal League, and the Michigan Townships Association.”

He added, “A no position statement came from the Michigan Association of Counties, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the Michigan Assessors Association.”

“The changes amount to a violation of the Michigan Constitution Article 9 provisions,” he said, “transferring costs to implement and maintain [the records] to local taxpayers through the local units of government.”

He continued, “It also does not address the major issues within the General Property Tax Act between the STC and the Michigan Tax Tribunal.”

“While Treasury indicates it does not like the seemingly massive levels of appeals, the changes do not even the interpretation of the General Property Tax Act between the STC and the Michigan Tax Tribunal,” Dysinger said.

The approved legislation was supported by all the local State Representatives and Senators and signed by the Governor.

In another matter, the Grant Township Board of Review spring schedule was set for  March 6th at 5 p.m.; the Organizational Meeting for  March 11th, from 9a.m. to noon and from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.; and the Appeals Meeting was scheduled for March 12th from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Dysinger said that this year’s inflation multiplier by statute on taxable values is 2.4%.

County Commissioners Leonard Strouse and Jack Kleinhart appeared before the Board. Kleinhart reported on a change in the General Property Tax Act which expands “qualified forest” land exemptions.  He said “The legislation approved and signed by the Governor will hurt the School Aide fund.”

Clare County Clerk Lori Martin was also at the meeting to outline additional changes in her office which will enhance services. One of those outlined was providing expanded in home service to senior citizens.  She also answered questions from the audience on circuit court restitution recovery efforts, which she said are going well, with many older cases now being resolved.

In other business:

*The Board approved appointment of Karl Randall to the Board of Review.

*The Board set Budget Workshops for March 19th at 7 p.m. and March 26th at 7p.m.

*The 2019 /2020 Budget adoption hearing will be held at 7:30 p.m. on March 26th.

*Bills totaling $23,969.63 were approved.

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