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Name:   Otter - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/1/2016 5:57:53 PM   IP ADDRESS: 71.91.11.253

I apologize for my first post not being more researched and factual, but, I had lunch with an individual today who has historically been accurate on tax issues in Tallapoosa County.  So, this is what I was told.  The county commission either has or will petitioned the Alabama general assembly requisting an increase in the county millage rate that would have the effect of about a 10% increase in property taxes.  As always, the reason being given is for the schools, which is the same reason used to justify the recent 1% increase in the county sales tax.  The person who shared this with me also said that he thought Mark Tuggle supported this increase, as "Tuggle will not be running again and has supported higher funding for the schools in the past."  I know that Mark Tuggle has publicly supported Common Core so it would not surprise me if the speculation that he supports this increase is correct.

 

I've seen statistics in the past regarding the disproportionate amount of property taxes from lake homes (on a unit basis), but, a 10% property tax increase will hurt everyone, even the majority of off lake properties and is one of the more regressive taxes out there.

 

For those that make the argument that our property taxes are low compared with other parts of the country, I respectfully think that those that buy into this argument are missing the point.  People with money retire to Alabama and Lake Martin in no small part to the relatively low property taxes.

 

I also don't buy into the argument, that will be made forever with no end, that the schools need more money.  My wife taught in the public school system  for several years till we removed our children to home shool them.  She can testify, as others with actual experience, how inefficiently and wastefull our public shool system is.  It has always been that way and always will be that way.  Always.  In fact, there are numerous studies, some very recent, that show an inverse correlation between money spent per student and educational outcomes.  The more money spent, the worse the outcome.  Seems to be a government law of nature.

 

And anyone who believes that the county spends our tax dollars effeciently, well, how does one even start a logical conversation with someone who holds that view?

 

I'm hoping that someone can shed some factual light on this issue.  Is the fix already in or is there still time to inform and mobilize to try to defeat this property tax increase?

 

 





Name:   Osms - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/1/2016 6:30:45 PM   IP ADDRESS: 71.82.18.33

I have no knowledge about any proposal to raise the millage rate for Tallapoosa County, but I can verify that approximately 49% of all property taxes collected in the county are collected from lake front homes.  Tallapoosa County enjoys a source of tax revenue that other counties don't have, Lake Martin homes.  Not only that, but very few school students live on the lake, so there is little impact to the school systems.  And about 2/3 of the lake front homes are second homes which are taxed without homestead exemption.  And to top it all, the property assessments are generally set way above the actual market value of the property.  The county assessor places values far exceeding actual value on the land portion of the assessment, while keeping the improvements at a reasonable rate.





Name:   HARRY - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/1/2016 8:21:50 PM   IP ADDRESS: 75.120.73.49

I wouldn't tell the assessor but no way would I sell for the assessed value on our place.





Name:   PC Al - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/1/2016 9:52:42 PM   IP ADDRESS: 172.1.102.48

I don’t mind paying property taxes for second home lake property but my problem is that it is another form of taxation without representation.  If you pay property taxes in a County, you should be able to vote in local elections, thereby having a little influence on local elected officials.  If lake owners could vote on local officials, think of the influence we could have on getting roads repaired, trash picked up, permitting of the companies that rape the woods/trees and leave our poorly repaired roads covered in mud, etc.  Just bumping my gums – know it ain’t gonna happen.  





Name:   John C - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to OSMS: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 9:00:14 AM   IP ADDRESS: 97.86.51.98

OSMS, regarding your comment, "property assessments are generally set way above the actual market value of the property."

1.) What data did you use to make that generalization? With the lake front being made up of thousands of parcels, how many did you sample and analyze, and with what method? I'd love to take a look at your study. That would be interesting.

2.) Are you implying that the Tallapoosa County Tax office: a.) knows the "true" market value, but b.) systematically places values above that true market value?

Thanks.





Name:   Ulysses E. McGill - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to OSMS: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 9:39:27 AM (updated 3/2/2016 10:24:37 AM)    IP ADDRESS: 73.207.163.129

I see the same over-valuation issues in Elmore County, John. My lot has been taxed at a rate that the market wouldnt support for several years (unless things have changed recently).





Name:   BigFoot - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to OSMS: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 10:19:30 AM   IP ADDRESS: 75.143.116.59

There was a marked valuation run-up during the boom but no compensatory decreases when the bubble burst...just an opinion as a Tallapoosa Co. taxpayer...





Name:   GoneFishin - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Do Something About It
Date:   3/2/2016 2:48:17 PM   IP ADDRESS: 173.171.169.146

If you feel your property is overvalued, there is a process to appeal it. You can always speak to the Tax Assessor and discuss how your house was appraised. 

APPEAL IT





Name:   BigFoot - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Do Something About It
Date:   3/2/2016 3:11:50 PM   IP ADDRESS: 75.143.116.59

Actually, I am not complaining now...things have evened up a bit





Name:   boataholic - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to OSMS: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 8:04:15 PM   IP ADDRESS: 104.137.15.124

Dittos to this in Coosa Co.  Valuation set in 2006 at more than I paid.  Never went down.  I sold last year for about 15% less than I paid. They know most of us won't bother dealing with the hassle of protesting a 20% over valuation. 





Name:   Ulysses E. McGill - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Do Something About It
Date:   3/2/2016 9:02:30 PM   IP ADDRESS: 73.207.163.129

Yep, I tried. We have a great system.  Total arrogance. At the appeals meeting they told me that the downturn in the market didn't apply because it woud come back (this was over 6 years ago and the valuation is still way high in my opinion). They actually told me it didn't matter that the lot wouldnt sell for that amount. They told me I could hire a lawyer and fight it, but if I lost I'd have to pay for any cost to the county and the court for their trouble....not to mention my lawyer. Our government is out of control.





Name:   Osms - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Do Something About It
Date:   3/2/2016 9:39:18 PM   IP ADDRESS: 71.82.18.33

Yep McGill, what you say is absolutely correct.  Even if you win your lawsuit and force the state appraiser to lower your appraisal the order only lasts one year and then they raise it back up.  That's what the state district appraisal supervisor told me, in a very arrogant tone, when I appealed a county appraisal that was 31.6% higher than I paid for the lot five months previously.





Name:   Osms - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to JOHN C: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 9:49:04 PM   IP ADDRESS: 71.82.18.33

While real estate transactions is not my field, I'll take a look at areas like Alabama Power's Emerald Shores taxes since I still have the lot prices on file from your website since your were the listing agent.  Should be informative.  See my comment to McGill below.





Name:   Osms - Email Member Reply
Subject:   I forgot to mention
Date:   3/2/2016 10:09:23 PM   IP ADDRESS: 71.82.18.33

If anyone may think I got a special deal or bought a distressed property, a local certified commercial appraiser appraised the property I mentioned above and his appraisal was 54% of the county appraisal.





Name:   Ulysses E. McGill - Email Member Reply
Subject:   I forgot to mention
Date:   3/2/2016 10:35:30 PM   IP ADDRESS: 73.207.163.129

I took an up to date professional appraisal that was almost three hundred thousand dollars less than the county apprasial to my appeals meeting. The guy actually laughed at it. I was so hot I had to turn and walk out to prevent doing something stupid. They have the system totally rigged, but it wasnt worth saving a few hundred dollars a year to hire a lawyer or go to jail for doing what I felt like doing.





Name:   Ulysses E. McGill - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/2/2016 11:22:09 PM   IP ADDRESS: 73.207.163.129

You are lucky.....keep it quite.





Name:   MrHodja - Email Member Reply
Subject:   I forgot to mention
Date:   3/2/2016 11:45:56 PM   IP ADDRESS: 45.29.248.199

I suspect a little class warfare may be in play.  The tax assessor can't afford to live in Trillium and takes pleasure in sticking it to the rich guy.





Name:   Osms - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to JOHN C: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/3/2016 10:50:47 AM   IP ADDRESS: 71.82.18.33

John C.  A review of Emerald Shores appraisals shows that the county seems to jack up values of lot appraisals after improvements are completed and property is sold.  Lot 24 is an example.  Listing price from your website shows an APCo's asking price for the lot of $150,000, and I'm sure the purchaser paid less.  According to the Tallapoosa County tax roll the new owner's lot appraisal is set at $265,000.  Approximately $20,000 in land improvements appraisal should be subtracted from that leaving a raw land value of $245,000 an increase of 63.3% over the documented asking price.  As you know, improvements such as retaining walls, seawalls, boathouses, and structural landscaping are assessed separately from the land assessment, then added to land value.

The county seems to be a year or two behind on posting sales of homes on the site.  Many of the lots are under construction or newly sold so more information will not be available for another year, but I expect the same results as this sample.





Name:   John C - Email Member Reply
Subject:   to JOHN C: re: Tallapoosa Property Tax Increase?
Date:   3/3/2016 1:18:28 PM   IP ADDRESS: 97.86.51.98

Thanks for the reference to my site and my business. I appreciate it. One thing about one of the first in the nation, and still one of the few in the state, and one of (maybe) two at the lake to have sites that discuss prices and opinion openly,  is it's easy to track my opinions for the last 9 years.

My question is of sample rate. I will repeat it - how many lake parcels did you sample to make that generalization? Just yours? Or did you cherry pick some in Emerald Shores? If you just look at your own, sure, it may be overpriced. I remember talking to Ulysses about his and I agree that his was wrong. But does that mean that "the fix" is in for a whole system? That's a pretty big leap to make without hard data to back it up.

Speaking of Emerald Shores, there are a few lot owners there that have owned since 2006 or so that claimed AP was selling them at, and I quote them, "fire sale" prices. They vehemently disagreed with the list prices as being too low. From their perspective, lot prices should be higher, and therefore more in line with what the county had. They would disagree with you.

As someone that looks at tax assessments nearly every day, I can tell you that I discern no pattern. Some are high. Some are low. Some are spot on, no matter what county we are talking about. Now, maybe it's because I haven't studied a random distribution of parcels, and not properly recorded the devations. Maybe my memory is clouded by my assumptions.

Statistics- it's all about your sample pool whether we are talking real estate, politics, or cola preference. How large is it? From where did you draw your sample pool? What is your margin of error? It's  a math question. It's not a matter of my opinion or even your opinion.

Maybe you are right and there is some grand conspiracy, but without data, it's just a guess.

For instance- if I ran an ad that said, "Consumer Selected as the #1 Real estate agent at Lake Martin! 100% of People voted John Coley #1!!!"  - that would sound pretty impressive until, after some digging, you realized that my sample pool of consumers was one person. And that one person was my mom.

I could make the point that I have evidence. My mom voted me #1. I could show you her ballot. But how much weight would you give my claim?





Name:   jcope - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Your Mom
Date:   3/3/2016 3:07:43 PM   IP ADDRESS: 24.197.7.194

I would like to invalidate all of the data in your example.

  If you can keep your Mom happy, nothing else really matters,

  and if you can add your wife to that list who cares what anyone else thinks.





Name:   roswellric - Email Member Reply
Subject:   [Message deleted by author]
Date:   3/8/2016 8:32:35 PM (updated 3/17/2016 10:37:41 AM)    IP ADDRESS: 73.43.180.215






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