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Special SB Minutes 03/30/17

posted Apr 4, 2017, 11:42 AM by Bob Champagne-Willis


March 30, 2017

CTO: 11:04 AM.

ATTENDANCE: Bonnie Lovell, Brad McVetty, Doug Lord, Elaine Hodge and Doug Lay.


Issues with garages with living space above or in them. Doug Lord asked the following questions and Doug Lay answered them:

Why is our appraisal company not listed in the approved list of companies? Doug Lay confirmed that our company merged and is now part of NEMRC which is on the approved list.

Who is certified to do appraisals? Listers are elected officials to do an appraisal. Certifications are available but not required to be certified because Listers are elected.

When was the last Maidstone town appraisal? 2008 and usually the maximum years to go before a reappraisal is 10 years to keep the grand list accurate. The 2016 equalization shows Maidstone at 112%. This means, on average, properties are over by 12% which makes resident tax rates lower. The equalization cannot fall below 80%. We should reappraise if numbers are over 10% above. This could take up to 2 years before it would begin after request.

Discussion regarding classifications:  How things are classified makes a big difference. Quality of home makes a difference. There are 6 categories for quality. There is a quality checklist to help determine what quality category a home falls under. If a new construction is not 100% complete, the lister will need to re-inspect annually until it is completed. Porches are also defined by Marshall & Swift by categories. The size, floor, walls, roofs, ceilings all determine which type of classification.

Apartment garages: We can re-appraise any property randomly if information is received that tax information is incorrect. Listers may reappraise all garages for accuracy. There are many different things that are looked at when appraising porches/out buildings. These include plumbing, rooms, finished or not, electricity, kitchen and bathroom, how many stories etc. Zoning permits are needed if changing garage to more than car storage (example to apartment). Quality does change the tax rate. If there are 2 identical garages but quality is different so will the tax rate.

Elaine Hodge and Doug Lord will attend workshop on April 26, 2017 in Fairlee on tax appeals. Elaine mentioned expert witnesses can be called in with approval of the Selectboard to attend BCA meetings on issues that cannot be resolved.