Opponent testimony for House Bill (HB) 126, the legislation sponsored by Rep. Merrin that modifies the Board of Revisions (BOR) process for property valuation challenges, has been scheduled in the Senate Ways and Means Committee for this Tuesday, November 9th, at 11:00 a.m.
Please submit your testimony and witness slip to Maria.Rimmel@ohiosenate.gov by 11:00 a.m. on Monday, November 8.
The House has already passed this bill, so it is critical that the Senate Ways and Means Committee hear from you. We know that a majority of you will be in Columbus for the Capital Conference and ask that you please take a few minutes to join us at the Statehouse in opposition of this bill.
This is the third time Rep. Derek Merrin has introduced this legislation. HB 126 reverts back to the original legislation in HB 343 (132nd General Assembly) and HB 75 (133rd General Assembly) prior to the Senate twice adopting substitute bills largely removing most of the requirements. Click here for the bill text, LSC Analysis and Fiscal Notes.
To recap, HB 126 requires a highly problematic and overly bureaucratic process for school districts when filing property valuation claims or counter-claims with county boards of revision (BOR), including:
- Notification to the property owners by the school district to let them know the district is considering filing a property valuation challenge or a counter-challenge to a property owner’s claim. This is a redundant mandate because the BOR process is already set up to notify affected property owners.
- After notification, the board of education must then pass a separate resolution indicating it will challenge the values for specific properties. This step would have the effect of politicizing the decisions as to which properties would be challenged.
Taken together, the new mandates in HB 126 appear to discourage boards of education from accessing the BOR process. Because of the effects of HB 920, property owners with accurate property values will pay more than their fair share of taxes for certain types of levies, subsidizing the lower taxes paid by property owners whose properties are undervalued. This result will be unfortunate, not only for school districts but also for the residential and commercial property owners whose values are accurate.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
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