Board of Review scheduled in Morenci 2.25

Written by David Green.

Is it possible for a tax bill to go up when property values are heading downward?

Just wait until your property assessment statement arrives. You might see it happen.

Marty Marshall, director of Lenawee County Equilization Department, reminds property owners that taxes are based on the taxable value, a figure that related to the consumer price index (CPI)—the annual rate of inflation.

The CPI is calculated in Lansing based on a fiscal year that ends in September. In the next year, Marshall said, the inflation rate is expected to hit a record low, but that won’t help for current values.

The CPI takes into effect the high gasoline prices of the past year and the inflation rate came in at 4.4 percent.

Proposal A, approved by voters in 1994,  caps the rate of the taxable value increase to no more than five percent each year. This was done to provide a more predictable and stable increase to tax bills.

The taxable value will increase each year by the CPI until it reaches the State Equalized Value (SEV), which is 50 percent of the true cash value of a property.

Any property that had a taxable value less than the SEV in 2008 will be increased by 4.4 percent until it reaches the SEV.

That’s no comfort to the owners of property with a decreasing value, although property that’s declining in value should show a change in the SEV portion of assessment notices.

Morenci is one area of the county where the SEV now exceeds 50 percent which will result in in lowering the value. The multiplier listed for Morenci lowers SEV by -5.6 percent. In Seneca, the multiplier is -6.5 percent and in Medina Township it’s -3.7 percent (see chart below).

Notices should arrive in the mail soon to show changes in the SEV and the taxable assessments. Property owners will have the opportunity to challenge assessments at the annual board of review.

Morenci’s board will meet at city hall March 12. The tax roll will be open for public inspection March 3, 4 and 5 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and again on March 12.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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