Montclair taxpayers received their recently issued tax bills in the mail late last week, bills that reflect changes based on the reassessed value of their properties. As a result, Montclair Patch has been bombarded with emails from Montclair residents concerned that their taxes have increased dramatically. Some charge that they soon will be putting their homes on the market.
But Councilor Bill Hurlock said today that at least some residents are reading their bills the wrong way.
"Essentially people are erroneously multiplying the third quarter payment by four and claiming that this is their new tax," he said. "The third quarter captures part of the payment for quarters one and two, thus it is already elevated."
He said that the township website has issued an update on the proper way to look at the property tax issue.
For those still confused by their tax bill, there's little the new Township Council can do about it. Assessments have been filed with the county and are completed for this year, meaning people can file an appeal—but for next year.
Here's the note from the township:
Montclair taxpayers received their recently issued tax bills which reflect changes based on the reassessed value of their property. Some tax bills increased in amounts greater than the spending increases approved in the municipal, school and county budgets – the atypical increase is a result of the township-wide reassessment conducted in 2011.
With the decline the housing market, Montclair property owners have filed 3,724 tax appeals since 2007. The appeals reduced the assessed value only on the properties whose owners successfully appealed. With only a portion of properties being adjusted to market value, an unfair shift in the tax burden was created that could only be adjusted through a township-wide reassessment.
Since reassessments adjust properties to market value, the properties whose assessments were closer to market value prior to the reassessment will see an increase in their tax burden.
Multiplying your third quarter bill by four will not accurately reflect your annual taxes – to determine your annual bill, multiply your new assessed value by the tax rate .03252.
The table below illustrates how the reassessment increased or decreased tax bills.
Amount of ChangeIncrease Decrease Total Properties =>100 291 391 Between 101 and 500 Dollars 935 893 Between 501 and 1,000 Dollars 625 1,013 Between 1,001 and 2,000 Dollars 794 2,103 Between 2,001 and 4,000 Dollars 953 1,187 Between 4,001 and 6,000 Dollars 216 137 Between 6,001 and 8,000 Dollars 40 28 8,000 + 30 33 3,884 5,785 9,669
As an aside, the Township Council will be holding its first regular meeting tonight at 8 p.m. (Also, you can take a look at your own taxes as well as everyone else's taxes by going here.)