Assessment Practices Survey Report Released for Los Angeles County


NR# 31-C
Date: September 13, 2002
Customer & Taxpayer Services Division

Assessment Practices Survey Report Released for Los Angeles County

John Chiang, Chairman, State Board of Equalization (BOE), today released an assessment practices survey report on Los Angeles County.

Once every five years, the BOE conducts a review of each county's property tax assessment functions to determine whether properties are being assessed properly and to identify areas where improvements should be made. Issued as an "Assessment Practices Survey," the report provides an overview of how well the duties of the assessor are performed and includes recommendations to correct assessment deficiencies and improve compliance with state law.

The BOE survey found many elements of the Los Angeles County Assessor's Office operation to be "particularly effective," specifically noting that:

-the Board survey team found "no problems" in the Assessor's administration of assessment appeals, nonmandatory audits, and the processing of business property statements.

-the Assessor's "aggressive business property discovery program" is an "effective" program "that has proven to be the best solution for tracking the county's sizable business turnover."

-"virtually all" of 12,000+ accounts of $400,000 or more in business personal property are completed on a timely basis with a "high degree of consistency among the audits," which the survey found to be "high quality" and "contain[ing] proper documentation."

The BOE found that properties in Los Angeles County are being assessed properly and the overall quality of the assessment roll meets the minimum standards required by the state to qualify for augmentation funds. The report provides 39 recommendations to improve the effectiveness of the assessor's operations. Included among those recommendations are the following:

  • Grant all qualifying disaster relief claims for base year value transfers.
  • Follow rule 461(e) when recognizing declines in land and improvement values.
  • Perform physical inspections during audits of large businesses.

The review focused on the quality of the 2000-2001 Los Angeles County assessment roll, which contained 2,574,028 assessments having a total enrolled value of $595 billion.

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Note: A copy of the Los Angeles County Assessment Practices Survey Reportis available upon request.