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Frequently Asked Questions - Assessor
The Property Tax Statement

Q: My taxes went up more than 3%. Why?

A: 1. There are a few common reasons why you may be paying more or less this year than last year. The rate for your area may increase if the voters approve a new levy or bond. The rate may decrease if a levy or bond expires.

2. Special assessments are taxes in addition to the tax rates. They include state fire patrol, irrigation district assessments, omitted property in prior years, and delinquent sewer charges among others. These charges change from year to year on a property to property basis. Every year the Oregon Department of Forestry sets the assessment for protection of privately owned forestland. The minimum charged for any lot or parcel is $18.75. All properties included in the forest protection district that are classified as “improved” will be levied with a surcharge by the state. It is important to remember that the surcharge for State Fire Patrol does not provide protection for the improvements on the property.

3. You may have had new construction on your property. Your home may have been assessed on Jan. 1 as partially complete and later completed in that year. The following assessment date of Jan. 1 reflects the completion of the construction. Subdivisions, generally reflect much lower value in the first year of their creation but are reassessed, according to Oregon statute, in the second year as construction begins or is completed.


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: Everything I read says that property prices have stagnated or dropped. Why did my taxes go up?

A: Did you know that in almost all cases your assessed value has no relationship with changes in market value?   Assessed value for most property is below real market value.  For unchanged properties assessed value will typically grow at 3 percent each year.  Only if real market value drops below last year’s assessed value plus 3 percent will you have a lower assessed value.


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: My tax bill shows “Improvements” and I didn’t do anything to my property this year. What are improvements?

A:  

Improvements are the existing alterations that have been made to vacant land over time. Your house, shed, carport, or asphalt and stone-work would all be included as improvements to your property. It does not mean that you have necessarily made any changes in the current year.



For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: Why do I get more than one tax bill? I own everything on the property

A:  

You may get multiple tax bills if you have a property which is divided between taxing district boundaries or if you have a property which has a portion of the acreage in a rural fire protection district. It is also possible that there is a personal property manufactured structure on your property that has its own tax account.



For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: What if I want to challenge the value the assessor has placed on my property?

A:  

Through the first week in December, you may fill out a “Request for Review” form and we will review the value placed on your property. An appraiser may explain how we arrive at market value. If you are not satisfied with the results of that review you may appeal to BOPTA by December 31st. If December 31st falls on a weekend, the deadline to appeal is extended to the next business day. However, unless new improvements were added, no change in the tax will occur unless the real market value is adjusted below the maximum assessed value. BOPTA appeals are filed with the County Clerk’s office. For further information please contact the County Clerk.



For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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