Tax Values

Before the fireLAND TAX VALUES

Does your burnt-out vacant land have the same tax value as a same-sized parcel that was not destroyed in the Oregon Road wildfire? They are being taxed at the same rates.

LandValueBurnt with info about this to take with you to the TOWN HALL MEETING ON TUESDAY, NOV 28th at 6pm.  The Country Church of the Open Bible.

After the fire

The Spokane County Assessor’s Office says, there will be no adjustments to lower tax rates for parcels in the wildfires.
Can we sell the “before” property for the same price as the “after” property?

NOT LIKELY!

There will be years of backbreaking physical labor needed to replant enough to restore the beauty of our forest lands destroyed in Elk. Not many buyers will sign up for this kind of job. Selling for a full-value purchase price is really not likely for the properties that are burned out. Our taxes on the land should reflect the “true and fair market value” accordingly. Our taxes should be reduced as we have to work to restore the forest over the next 3 years.

Tax Valuations Are Going Amuck

Our tax valuations are going amuck, amuck, amuck in Elk Washington. You can see a previous post about going to the tax collector meeting in downtown Spokane a while back.

I have experienced a 350% increase in property taxes since 1996 (26 years). 200% of that increase was in the previous 10 years. With valuations/taxes escalating at a rapid rate I fear many will be losing their homes. It is such a shame that we work so hard all our lives to build our places, only to be booted out by a corrupt money-hungry tax system.

1996 land 10 acres Elk, WA $15,800 – single wide mobile $11,700

2008 land 10 acres Elk, WA $50,000 – single wide mobile $15,100

*2009 land 10 acres Elk, WA $50,000 – single wide mobile $74,900

2010 land 10 acres Elk, WA $65,000 – single wide mobile $40,300

2015 land 10 acres Elk, WA $40,000 – house under construction $75,800

2020 land 10 acres Elk, WA $50,000 – house $220,700

2021 land 10 acres Elk, WA $76,2000 – house $322,600

Spokane Tax Assessors

Appraiser Humor
The cartoon above was found on Tom Konis’ FaceBook page (https://www.facebook.com/tom.konis). A prime example of Appraiser humor.

Tax Budget Mysteries

Spokane Tax Assessors (Tom Konis) had this cartoon on his FaceBook page. Revealing?

Did you know that the Assessor’s Office is given a total dollar amount to generate for each fiscal year? Who it is, that gives Spokane County this number to collect, has not yet been discovered. That is just another topic that this FreedomPod in NE Washington needs to do a search and rescue research mission and then broadcast for you.

 

Spoco Percentage Tax Increase 22-23

“Fair market values” are then set, by using percentage amounts across different regions of the County and basically dividing up portions of the pot between citizens that live there. Above is an image displaying the regional percentage divisions that tax rates will increase next year. Check how much more you will pay next year. The Spokane County Assessor’s Office’s basis for calculating a property’s “fair market value” is that they must generate this total dollar value.

We live in Elk, Washington and the percentage of increase will be 27.98% in this region, our taxes will be going up an additional 27.98% next year. Hmmm. In the past 3 years, they have escalated 100% already, doubling. Now, I can look forward to another 1/3’rd raise even if the housing market dives. Hmmm.

Want Change?

The entire process that figures out how much to assess and where to spend our property tax dollars has very little voter involvement at this time. This is really not good. For things to improve, as taxpayers, we need to become aware of and be active participants in what is going on.

These decision-makers have no one holding them accountable for unreasonable decisions that affect our lives.

We must educate ourselves to stop this. Am I willing to take what steps are necessary to pay attention to and counter unreasonable tax levies? YES. We will share what is found on this blog. We will also begin recruiting others interested in making a positive change.

Remember! If our elected officials are not voted back into office they can not continue to impose unwarranted taxes on us. Organizing and voting is the most important citizen action we can take. BTW, Tom Konis got back into office running unopposed. What a shame. Wouldn’t it be great to have someone who is a working-class citizen in this position instead of a Realtor? See, Conflict of Interest here.

 

Conflict-of-Interest

Conflict-of-Interest?

Does this situation seem like a Tax Assessor Conflict-Of-Interest to you? We pay the Board members (Realtors) to work in a government setting where they are in charge of setting the values and making the rules for taxes on the real estate that they can sell. The Board Members of the Spokane Tax Assessors Office are Realtors & Realty Brokers except for one who is a Lawyer specializing in Real Estate Law.  I did not make this up! It is information buried in the Washington, Spokane County website (see links below). You just have to be willing to go on a search and rescue mission to locate it.

Meet the Board Members

How Much Money?

Let’s see, 6% of $250k equals a commission of $15k in commission,
but that same 6% on a $450k valued home sale comes to $27k in commission,
and that same 6% on a $650k valued home sale comes to $39k in commission.Realtor Commissions

With property values escalating so quickly, many may be unable to cover the increased cost of taxes. It is likely that they will lose their homes. A forced sale of your home to cover taxes is not a happy event in anyone’s life. Then, having to move somewhere else in this “housing-shortage” market, is a sentence to start over in a rental for most displaced homeowners. Taxpayer resentment after losing all those years of work to have their own home is not easily forgotten.

A tyrannical government sets paths to focus on low-income, fixed-income, and/or the elderly. Taxpayers’ non-involvement could very likely allow more to fall prey to this crooked setup. Losing a home at any stage of life due to out-of-control government greed is an atrocity. Wake up and smell the coffee.

Ridiculous Tax Inflation

Sky-Rocketing Tax Values

The Spokane County Tax Assessment Office crafted its own ridiculous tax inflation rates this year raising our property values by over $100,000 dollars. Does that sound reasonable to you?

We called to request a correction and the appraiser came out took pictures and ended up sending us a corrected assessment with a measly $2,000 reduction. As originally stated this is ridiculous! It is not a true or fair market value for our place, so we will have to appeal it. Filing an appeal will not be easy, but, we have to do something because this rapid inflation cripples us financially. Not a fund task at all.

Starting at the Spokane County of Washington State homepage URL “https://www.spokanecounty.org/“. Their homepage is built for people already familiar with all government offices, it is not helpful to the general public. I used a search for “property tax appeal” to find what department was correct to get information to start an appeal. Following is the information I was able to locate.

Appeal & Change in Value Forms

This page lists PDF forms that you can download to do an appeal.

General Outline of Appeal Process

Frequently Asked Questions

Meet the Board Members

Did you know that the Board Members of the Spokane Tax Assessor are all Realtors/Brokers except for one who is a Lawyer specializing in Real Estate? Does this look like a Conflict-Of-Interest?????

Parcel Information Search (SCOUT)

Preparing an Appeal

Don’t Miss THURSDAY!

THURSDAY!

Don’t miss Thursay! Please join us 5-7pm at Riverside High School to meet Senator Mike Padden (R) and discuss laws and policies affecting us here. Our representatives need us to tell them what we want them to do.

Chances are that you received this card in the mailbox and promptly threw it in the circular file before even reading it. Well, with so many political advertisements stuffing the box, it gets real easy to throw them away. Pete and I have certainly been guilty of that one, for sure. However, we need to be more careful about what we casually discard in these times. Aren’t you tired of how things are going? Take a positive step and attend this free meeting to begin making a difference.

Do you believe that US citizens should have a voice in how the government treats us?

Speak up and participate in communicating responsibly with our elected officials. Meet other people in the local community that may have similar concerns as yourself. Successfully create a network to work together and change things. Peter and I are becoming more involved in taxes, appointed committees, and laws that are affecting our rural way of life. Contact us with any questions you may have.

Remember

If you do nothing, then it is guaranteed that nothing at all will change.

We the People…

 

Spokane County Tax Assessor

Tom Konis Tax AssessorVoter's Pamphlet The Spokane County Tax Assessor is Tom Konis. It was surprising to find that Konis is listed in our Voter’s Pamphlet as running Unopposed. Is this a good idea for a man who has made over 1-1/2 million dollars in this assessor’s office all ready to be handed the position for the next 4 years without any effort having to be put forth?

He was an appraiser since 1993 (26 years), assessing residential property values in Spokane County. A residential appraiser for 26 years, at $50,884.08 works out to wages in the neighborhood of $1,322,986.08. For 3 years he has been the Spokane County Assessor at a wage of $114,351.57 so, Tom Konis has received a total of $343,054.71 so far in that position. We should get someone to be a write-in candidate to at least make the election have some semblance of fairness.

Wages for our elected officials are listed here.

 

Property Taxes Raised?

Property Taxes Raised!

After attending the tax collector town hall meeting in Spokane, we walked back to the parking lot. There was a sense of overwhelming apathy surrounding us.  The huge increase in property and land values in our property tax notices inspired increased public attendance. Tax increases upwards of 40% in 2022! Almost everyone’s questions were centered on this insane increase.

Sadly, many of us that were in attendance are in fear of losing our homes. Excessive tax increase sets up taxpayers on a fixed income for failure. Many others that were there, have had unprecedented levels of economic upheaval during the past three years, making this also true for them.

The County Tax Collector’s Office does not set the amount of tax required for the budget, or assess the values of individual properties in the county. They only collect, direct and invest the tax money. Taxpayer requests for avenues of resolution received only vague references to, the State Legislators… or City Council for answers. The Contact information below was provided at the end of the meeting.

County Commissioner’s Contact Information 509/477-2265

  • District 1 (North) Josh Kerns jkerns@spokanecounyty.org
  • District 1 (North) Josh Kerns jkerns@spokanecounyty.org
  • District 2 (East) Mary Kuney mkuney@spokanecounty.org
  • District 3 (West) Al French afrench@spokanecounty.org
  • District 2 (East) Mary Kuney mkuney@spokanecounty.org
  • District 3 (West) Al French afrench@spokanecounty.org

Property Tax Information

Taxpayer Town MeetingProperty Tax Information

The Spokane County Assessor Website

are Application Forms
  • 2022 Application Packet
  • 2021 Exemption Brochure
  • Proof of Disability Statement
  • Declaration of Trust
  • Income Threshold for 2019_Prior, and 2020-2024

Tax Law Information:

WA State Legislator, RCWs > Title 84 > Chapter 84.36 > Section 84.36.383 ,

https://app.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=84.36.383

The Social Security Act, Sections 223(d)(2)(A), Disability,

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2005/02/15/05-2860/the-social-security-act-sections-223d2a-and-1614a3b-as-amended-42-usc-423d2a-and-1382ca3b-disability

Taxpayer Town Hall Meeting

Taxpayer Town MeetingTaxpayer Town Hall Meeting

in downtown Spokane

on

Tuesday, April 5th

6-7pm

at

the Museum of Arts & Culture Auditorium

2316 W First Ave, Spokane WA

For more information and links to the County Treasurer’s office and info about applying for exemptions for disabilities and seniors visit this prior post. More information is on this prior post about the tax office forms.