Property taxes due in to assessor April 30

March 2, 2012

King County residents started to receive property tax bills in February and, although property tax collection in the county is up 1.71 percent from last year, property owners should see a drop in bills and a decline in property valuation.

The total value of property in the county continued to decline for the 2012 tax roll, but the drop is slightly less than 2011. Officials said property values declined in almost every area in King County last year.

The median assessed value in rural Southeast King County, for instance, declined from $304,000 for the 2011 tax roll to $259,000 for 2012 — or a decrease in the tax bill of $470.

“Bank foreclosures and other distressed sales continue to be a drag on property values overall in King County,” King County Assessor Lloyd Hara said in a statement. “This is driving property values down through most of King County, and is resulting in property tax reductions for some.”

Washington operates under a budget-based property tax system, meaning local taxing districts — including fire, library and school districts — submit annual adopted budgets to the county assessor. The county assessor then has the responsibility to determine the necessary taxing route to meet the adopted budgets.

Hara and other county assessors statewide establish property values.

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King County assessor mails property tax bills to residents

February 20, 2012

NEW —9 a.m. Feb. 20, 2012

King County residents started to receive property tax bills in recent days and, although property tax collection in the county up 1.71 percent from last year, property owners should see a drop in bills and a decline in property valuation.

The total value of property in the county continued to decline for the 2012 tax roll, but the drop is slightly less than 2011. Officials said property values declined in almost every area in King County last year.

The median assessed value in rural Southeast King County, for instance, declined from $304,000 for the 2011 tax roll to $259,000 for 2012 — or a decrease in the tax bill of $470.

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King County warns residents about property tax email scam

December 15, 2011

NEW — 4:15 p.m. Dec. 15, 2011

King County officials warned residents about a possible email scam Thursday, after the county received calls from people about a bogus online property tax payment.

The callers reported receiving false confirmation of online property tax payments made through the King County e-commerce system. The county did not send the emails, and the county’s e-commerce system has not been compromised.

“It appears that someone copied our standard payment confirmation email and altered the header in the email so that it appears to be from King County,” county Chief Information Officer Bill Kehoe said in a statement. “These messages did not come from King County, and the recipients have not made any payments with us.”

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Parks upkeep to be funded next year

December 2, 2010

The City Council amended the 2011 preliminary budget to include $62,000 for parks maintenance, as the budget had previously called for maintenance of the city neighborhood parks to be discontinued.

The amendment was one in a string of more than a dozen approved by the council.

The council also approved a 1 percent property tax hike, although it also voted to reduce storm water fees by about $36 per household. Through the combination, those with homes worth less than about $1.5 million will see a reduction in taxes.

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Council to continue budget amendments, address property taxes Nov. 23

November 17, 2010

NEW — 2 p.m. Nov. 17, 2010

The City Council will hold a special meeting at 6 p.m. Nov. 23 in the Council Chambers, 13020 Newcastle Way, to continue making amendments to the 2011 preliminary budget and decide whether to increase property taxes next year.

The council began making amendments to the budget and held its final public hearing on the matter at its Nov. 16 meeting.

At the Nov. 16 meeting, the council voted to add $62,000 for parks maintenance next year, reduce funding for A Regional Coalition for Housing to $10,000 from $26,000, eliminate the $166,000 skate park project scheduled to be funded in 2012 and change city staff merit raises into noncompounding bonuses.