ACCOMACK: County to lower real-estate tax for valuation

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BY TED SHOCKLEY, Eastern Shore Post—

The Accomack County Board of Supervisors is proposing to lower its real estate tax rate by 11 cents to equalize a 24% jump in real estate reassessments.

“You will not be receiving a 24% increase in your taxes,” said Board Chairman Robert Crockett at a Wednesday, March 20, meeting. “We’re going to lower your tax rate.”

The reduced tax rate is part of Accomack County’s proposed $85.3 million budget for the fiscal year that begins in July.

A public hearing on the budget proposal will be held on Monday, March 25, at 5 p.m. in board chambers.

County code requires properties be reassessed every two years. The Accomack Department of Assessment examined around 2,200 home sales between 2022 and 2023, broken down into 14 neighborhoods and 19 tax districts, in its most recent assessment.

Virginia’s constitution and state code set several consequences if a county fails to assess properties at 100% of their fair-market value.

County Administrator Mike Mason said real estate values increased 24% on average across the county’s 39,000 taxable parcels.

However, a tax reassessment cannot be a financial windfall for a municipality, according to the state code — the tax rate must be adjusted downward so revenues are roughly equal to the old valuations.

Supervisors have been getting calls from constituents as they received their reassessment notifications, they said.

Crockett and Mason attempted to explain that the reduction in the tax rate will take away some of the shock of the reassessment value.

“They will see very, very little tax increase, if any tax increase,” Crockett said of landowners.

Chincoteague and Parksley saw the biggest increase in real estate values, Mason said. Tangier Island had a reduction in valuations.

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