Five questions: Value added
Q: What exactly is the role of the county appraiser?
A: The county appraiser plays a key role in assuring taxpayers are provided a fair property tax base for spreading the cost of providing local services. In particular, a county appraiser should: appraise and assess property accurately, uniformly, and according to the law; discover property that has not been listed, or has not been accurately listed; assure that property, which qualifies for exemption, is indeed exempt, and property that is taxable is indeed taxed.
Real and personal property are appraised as of Jan. 1 of each year. Market value (the amount in terms of money a willing buyer and willing seller would agree to) is the basis of value for most real property except agricultural land. Agricultural land is appraised on the basis of its productivity and a formula determined by Kansas Constitution, statutes and state guidelines.
Q: What is your background in land appraisal?
A: I have 21 years of experience in property appraisal and property tax administration at both the state and local levels. My experience includes working for Landmark Appraisal for four years, then as an appraiser with Property Valuation Division of the Kansas Department of Revenue. The last 11 years I have been the deputy county appraiser with Leavenworth County.
Q: How did you become the appraiser?
A: When Donna Graf informed the Leavenworth County Commission she was retiring, the job for county appraiser was posted. I applied and interviewed for the position and was offered the job. The county appraiser is appointed by the commissioners by resolution. County appraisers are appointed to four-year terms.
Q: What is the busiest time of the year for your office?
A: The busiest time of year is November through May. In this time period, we finalize values for the Jan. 1 valuation date. We then send change of value notices on or before March 1 for real estate and May 1 for personal property. Then we have informal valuation hearings and certify the values to the Leavenworth County Clerk on or before June 15.
Q: What are some of the most frequently asked questions at the Appraiser’s Office?
A: See frequently asked questions on the appraiser’s Web site at leavenworthcounty.org.