NASHUA — With the city’s assessing department under fire in recent months, the mayor is now requesting funds to conduct a full measure and list revaluation of all city properties.
On Monday, a public hearing will be held to discuss Mayor Jim Donchess’ proposed $1.3 million bond to cover the cost of the property revaluation services.
His recommendation comes just one month after the New Hampshire Board of Tax and Land Appeals agreed to investigate allegations of inequities within the city’s assessment process.
City officials are in the process of drafting a request for proposals for a full measure and list, Kim Kleiner, administrative services director, said Friday.
According to Kleiner, the full measure and list revaluation, which includes a site visit to every property, is expected to begin either this fall or early spring.
“They will attempt to get into every property, and if they can’t get in, they will leave a card for follow-up,” she said. “This will be a three-year process.”
In March, the city’s chief assessor position was eliminated after an internal audit report highlighted significant problems within the city’s assessing division. The audit revealed ineffective management and resulted in a 28-page report that detailed several findings and recommendations.
One of the recommendations made in the report stated that a full measure and list project take place over the next few years to update property record data, noting a full measure and list of all properties within the city has not been conducted since the early 1990s.
Although a townwide revaluation took place last year, it was not as detailed and thorough as a full measure and list.
Last month, Kleiner told the Board of Assessors that the assessing department has been focused heavily on abatements in recent months, noting the latest round of 91 residential abatements and four commercial abatements.
The New Hampshire Board of Tax and Land Appeals previously filed an order and set a hearing notice for Aug. 6.
“The board opens this docket to investigate concerns regarding the legality and proportionality of the city’s assessments,” the board wrote in its order, adding the board previously heard testimony that the city has not performed a complete measure and list, or a cyclical review of the physical property data since the early 1990s, along with allegations that the city may be treating sold and unsold properties differently during the assessing process.
Tonight’s public hearing on the proposed $1.3 million bond for the property revaluation services will begin at 7 p.m. at Nashua City Hall.