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Malta residents balk at reassessment

In her formal presentation to the board and residents, Otis said that it is typical of a reassessment at 100 percent market value to draw the ire of some residents. However, she said, holding up a one-and-a-half-inch thick packet of assessment roles, a small percentage of taxpayers will see increases. Next she held up roughly a quarter of the stack, indicating those who would see increases in school and county taxes.

"I know it's hard, but our bottom line is that our burden is spread evenly," said Otis. "The market is not tanking here. We are in really good shape; we are the lucky ones."

Nearly two years ago, Malta opted to return to full market value in creating fair and equitable property assessments and subsequently kicked off a comprehensive townwide reassessment of all properties. The town retained GAR Associates, Inc., which worked with the assessor's department to survey the town's commercial and residential properties and collect property inventory data, sales and viable market information.

Otis and town officials are inviting the public to attend several workshops leading up to grievance day in May to review documents and records to help them understand how officials came by the new assessments. They are calling them preliminary grievance proceedings.

Officials have scheduled the workshops at town hall on Saturday, March 8, at 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. A second round of workshops is scheduled for Wednesday, March 12, at 5 and 7 p.m. To reserve a spot in the workshops, call 694-3775.""

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