Incorrect Tax Property Assessments Raise Concern
The phones started ringing off the hook at the Greater Downtown Council and County Commissioner's office immediately after the evaluation notices were sent out.
DULUTH, Minn.- After property evaluations were recently sent out by St. Louis County many local downtown Duluth businesses were shocked to see huge increases in the value of their property. Now the county assessor’s office is taking a second look at how they evaluated those properties with the possibility of changes being made.
The phones started ringing off the hook at the Greater Downtown Council and County Commissioner’s office immediately after the evaluation notices were sent out, as local businesses noticed their estimated market value was alarmingly higher than ever before. Nearly 150 properties from 7th Avenue West, to 10th Avenue East, and into Canal Park were incorrectly assessed given higher rates property value rates. The County Commissions officer took over property value assessment nearly five years ago.
The St. Louis County Administrator Kevin Gray tells us they’re currently working to see what went wrong.
“It was clear that we just did not review the numbers properly, they were inaccurate and we’re working hard to fix them,” Gray said.
Property owners also reached out to the Greater Downtown Council, in what they describe as a panic and confusion as to how to handle the unusually high market values.
One property, the Board of Trade recently sold for $850,000 but assessed as nearly 3 million dollars.
“I think there’s a lot of concern there, where I think anyone looks at that and says hmm there’s something not right here, and so I think we’re looking forward to some sort of a resolution and some sort of modifications,” Greater Downtown Council President Kristi Stokes said.
The Greater Downtown Council and County are now working together to ensure businesses are being heard.
Gray wouldn’t tell us exactly how far off the estimates are saying the bottom line is they’re inexplicitly high. The County Administrator says all the evaluations will be revisited by the county.