Review board to hear more than 5,000 property appeals

Board of Review to hear more than 5,000 property appeals

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - More than 100,000 New Orleans property owners saw changes to their 2020 assessments and nearly 6,000 of them are still fighting to appeal.

Orleans Parish Tax Assessor Erroll Williams said more than 9,000 people walked through the assessors office to appeal their property values.

“We met with as many people as we could where we settled, we settled those assessments,” Williams said.

According to Williams, the last time the office saw that many appeals was when the parish shifted to a one assessor system.

“It’s a record year in that we did 129,000 changes. Normally we average between 35,000 and 55,000 as we phase in the four-year valuation,” Williams said.

He said they’re still working with property owners to settle some of the 5,800 appeals before they go to the board of review. They hoped to whittle the number of appeals to less than 5,000, but the board of review is scheduled to start hearing those appeals next week.

Property owners should be notified of their scheduled time to appear before the board of review.

While the city council acts as the board of review, appellants will not have an appointment to appear before the city council.

Councilman Jared Brossett said they hired a third party contractor, Hammerman and Gainer International to hear all those appeals.

“I’m not a certified appraiser, these are the experts and they’re going to sit down with each appellant and go through each of their documents politely and respectfully,” Brossett said.

Brossett said he’s worried about the potential consequences from the quadrennial assessment. He said this is the highest number of appeals he’s seen since his time in council, and said citizens’ fears with doubled and tripled assessments are real.

“That you’re forced out of Orleans Parish and that’s frustrating to think of, when you think of what people have gone through the last few months with these appeals,” Brossett said.

He said right now, the process needs to play out. After the contractors hear those appeals, Brossett said the group will compile a report of the appeal outcomes for each of the council districts. The council will then vote as they would a resolution, to uphold or reject the group’s report.

Brossett said he’ll be anxious to see the figures.

“[We’re] asking for patience while we work diligently through our process now that we’ve started,” Brossett said.

Hammerman and Gainer did not respond to FOX 8′s request for comment.

The schedule for the appeal appointments have been posted, and property owners should be receiving notification of their hearing dates and times. If after the council approves the appeals, property owners still have the ability to appeal to the Louisiana state tax commission.

Copyright 2019 WVUE. All rights reserved.