Frequently Asked Questions

Ad Valorem Tax – Based on the value of Real Property

  • Funds Schools
  • Pays for Police and Fire Protection
  • Maintains Roads
  • Funds Municipal Services enjoyed by residents


  • Counties
  • Cities
  • Towns 
  • Villages
  • School Districts 
  • Special Districts
  • State does not Collect Property Taxes, it is a local tax


  • Properties Taxable Assessment
  • Tax Rate of Jurisdiction


  • Every Parcel in an assessing unit is assessed.
  • Real Property is defined as land and any permanent structure attached


  • All Real Property is NOT taxable
  • Some property is wholly exempt ( i.e. religious or government properties)
  • Partially exempt (i.e. owner is a veteran or STAR exemption)


  • Assessors – elected or appointed officer charged by law with the duty of assessing real property for taxation or special advalorem levies
  • Valuation of Real Property
  • Whether or not real property is subject to taxation or levies


  • Highest Price estimated in terms of money
  • Sale exposed for reasonable time on open market
  • Buyer and Seller acting without compulsion
  • Full knowledge of all uses of the property


  • Utility of Property
  • Scarcity
  • Marketable or transferable
  • Demand
  • Financial Climate


  • Market:  Analysis of Current Sales of Similar Property
  • Cost:  Determine replacement cost of building minus physical, economic and functional depreciation
  • Income:  Determine income producing ability of property minus legal expenses, capitalized
  • Tax Levying Unit
  • Does NOT assess real property
  • Adopt town assessment rolls


  1. Not an assessing unit.
  2. No control of roll
  3. Several town are in a district
    1. Different standard of assessment
    2. Different levels of expertise amongst assessors
    3. Different exemption levels
    4. Different economies