Frequently Asked Questions - Assessor
The Property Tax Statement

Q: My taxes went up more than 3%. Why?

A: The only 3% limitation in Oregon’s property tax law is on the Maximum Assessed Value (MAV) of property.  Tax rates are not subject to the 3% limitation.  Each taxing district has a “permanent” rate that was set when the voters passed Measure 50 in 1997. In addition to the permanent rate, voters may choose to approve additional levies or bonds.  Tax rates may increase if the voters approve a new levy or bond. The tax rate will decrease when approved levies or bonds expire if they are not renewed by voters.

MAV was introduced as part of Measure 50. A base MAV was set in 1997 which was the 1995 Real Market Value (RMV) less 10%. Each year your MAV is compared to the RMV of your property and the tax rate is applied to the lower of the two values.  If your RMV was less than the MAV in the prior year and the RMV increased more than 3%, your taxable value will increase more than the 3% until it is greater than the MAV at which time it will again be subject to the MAV 3% limitation. MAV only increases by 3% if it was the value used in the prior year.

There are exceptions to the 3% limitation on MAV that may increase your taxable value. New construction with a value greater than $10,000 in a single year or more than $25,000 in a five-year period will increase the MAV more than 3%. 

 


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: My tax bill has something called "Special Assessments" on it. What are these?

A: 

  • State Fire Patrol: Every year the Oregon Department of Forestry sets the assessment for protection of privately owned forestland. There is a minimum charge for lots or parcels and all “improved” properties included in the forest protection district will be levied a surcharge by the state. It is important to remember that the surcharge for State Fire Patrol does not provide protection for the improvements on the property.
  • MS Community Resource Fee is a state-wide fee assessed to “personal” manufactured structures.
  • Among others, the most common special assessments are:
    • Prior year(s) omitted property
    • Delinquent sewer charges
    • Irrigation district assessments


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: My tax bill shows “Improvements” and I didn’t do anything to my property this year. What are improvements?

A:  Improvements are the existing alterations that have been made to vacant land over time. Your house, shed, carport, or asphalt and stone-work would all be included as improvements to your property. It does not mean that you have necessarily made any changes in the current year.


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: Why do I get more than one tax bill? I own everything on the property

A: 

There are a number of reasons you may be receiving more than one tax bill for a single tax lot.

  • If you are in a rural fire protection district (RFPD), the taxes for the RFPD are only assessed against the first 5 acres plus the structures on the property. Any acreage in excess of 5 acres is taxed at a lower rate. A separate tax bill is necessary due to the difference in tax rates.
  • Some taxing district boundaries cross through a tax lot. Example would be if the school district boundary cuts through your tax lot, part of your tax lot would be taxed for Grants Pass School District 7 and part taxed to Three Rivers School District. A separate tax bill is necessary due to the difference in tax rates.
  • If you have a manufactured structure on your tax lot that is in different ownership than the land, the manufactured structure will have a separate tax bill even though the tax rate is the same. A manufactured structure is considered to have different ownership if there is any difference in the names (such as: real property in a trust and the manufactured structure is not in the trust; husband and wife own the real property but only one name on the manufactured structure).
  • If there is a business located on the property there will be a business personal property account separate from the real property account.


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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Q: What if I want to challenge the value the assessor has placed on my property?

A: Through the first week in December, you may fill out a “Request for Review” form and we will review the value placed on your property. An appraiser may explain how we arrive at market value.  For a Request for Review, please contact the Assessor's Office.

If you are not satisfied with the results of that review you may appeal to BOPTA by December 31. If December 31 falls on a weekend, the deadline to appeal is extended to the next business day. However, unless new improvements were added, no change in the tax will occur unless the real market value is adjusted below the maximum assessed value. BOPTA appeals are filed with the County Clerk’s office. For further information regarding BOPTA appeals please contact the County Clerk.


For more information, contact  or call (541) 474-5260.


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