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Grand Forks County property owners to see small value increases

Grand Forks City Hall

Since starting with the city of Grand Forks Assessing Department in 2006, City Assessor Paul Houdek said he has never seen a change in taxable property values this low.

From 2017 to 2018, Houdek's department reported property values only increased about 2 percent overall, a "very small change," he said.

"Now that was for all reasons," Houdek said, one being "revaluation," or market adjustment. "It's a product of us comparing our values with the sale prices of the properties that are selling in the market."

"The only properties that had a market adjustment were properties that were reappraised that year," Houdek said, adding his department appraises a certain number of neighborhoods every year to keep its database up to date.

Most of the overall value increase came from construction and annexation, according to the most recent annual report from the Assessing Department. To keep taxpayers in the loop before real statements come out in December, the state began ordering counties to send taxpayers sample statements in August, which featured estimated tax amounts and dates for public budget hearings in the city and Grand Forks County.

"It's to let them know what their budget, or what their taxes, are going to be for the following year," Grand Forks County Auditor Debbie Nelson said. "(It) allows them time to come to the budget hearings of all the taxing entities, so their voices can be heard," Nelson said.

State law also requires real bills to go out before Dec. 26.

The county auditor begins calculating tax amounts after receiving values from Houdek's office and budgets from local taxing entities earlier in the year.

"Then we disperse that budget to the property owners based on the (property) values," Nelson said.

The city of Grand Forks has a public hearing for its budget Sept. 17 at City Hall, and the county has a hearing Sept. 18 for its budget at the County Office Building. Grand Forks Public Schools will hold a hearing Sept. 10 at the Mark Sanford Education Center, the Grand Forks Park District at the Choice Health and Fitness Community Room on Oct. 2, the Soil Conservation District at the Woodland Lodge on Turtle River State Park Sept. 12.

Emily Allen

Allen joined the Grand Forks Herald to cover local government and politics May 2018. Call her at 701-780-1102, email her at eallen@gfherald.com or follow her on Twitter, @Emily_theHerald.

(701) 780-1102
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