Reassessment team making progress on improving accuracy

by Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Nov 13, 2013 - 12:36 PM

Gloucester supervisors recently received some good news on how the county’s in-house reassessment team is doing to make the upcoming 2015 reassessment more accurate.

County assessor Derek Green, who has been leading the department for the past year and a half, updated his department’s progress during a meeting held last Wednesday in the colonial courthouse.

One of the issues the department has been working on, Green said, is correcting how outbuildings are assessed. He said when he took the position, there were 5,000 different types of outbuildings listed in the county’s reassessment software, and he had over 38,000 records to correct. "That was an astronomical number," Green said.

He said features like riprap, jetties, and bulkheads were treated as outbuildings in the old system, each with its own set value. "I had to ask myself, ‘Why are we assigning value to these,’" Green said. "Instead, we should be subtracting value from properties that don’t have these resource protection areas." He said he checked with other jurisdictions up and down the East Coast, which took away value for properties not having this protection.

There were also other things Green removed from the reassessment system. "It was staggering what in that system we could get rid of," he said. In one example, he said there was a tree house on the property that was being assessed. "I saw a ton of personal property that didn’t belong in the system," he said.

Green said his office has also implemented a process where various models of homes in major subdivisions in the county can be brought in and seen on a computer screen, rather than having to go out into the field to look at and measure these homes individually.