Weakley County Assessor of Property
Duties and Responsibilities:
The assessor determines the value of all property in the county, whether real, personal or mixed, including mineral rights, leaseholds and all other property except property of public utilities valued by the state. The assessor maintains the property tax maps of the county and keeps current indexes of taxpayers, including a description of the property on the tax books sufficient to identify it.
The assessor also reports assessments to the local and state boards of equalization. Taxpayers who feel that the assessor has placed an unfair value on their property may appeal to the Local Board of Equalization and then to the State Board of Equalization.
When the assessor determines the appraised value of property in the county, the assessed value is calculated. The assessor does this by applying the classification percentage, as stated in the Constitution, to the appraised value of the property (TCA 67-5-901). An example would be, real property will have the constitutional percentages applied (public utility-55%, industrial and commercial - 40%, residential and farm - 25%) to the appraised value to determine the assessed value of non-exempt real property.
For purposes of ad valorem taxation of property, the assessor of property places a value on commercial, industrial, residential, and farm land, including mineral rights and taxable leaseholds, but public utility property is valued by the state (T C S67-5-101, 647-5-1301).
Under the Agricultural, Forest, and Open Space Land Act a program called "Greenbelt" allows property to be valued at a use value rather than market value. If the use or classification changes on property qualifying for this program, taxes known as rollback taxes are assessed on the difference between market and use values. This tax will regain the "lost tax revenue for up to three years for agricultural land and five years for open space land (T C A 67-1008).
Per T C A 67-5-901, the assessor must assess and place a value on all county property for taxation purposes by May 20 of each year; the date of valuation is January 1 (TCA 67-5-504).
The assessment amount is taxed according to the rate established by the county legislative body. In order to keep appraisals current, reappraisals are done on a four, five or six year cycle. In those counties using a six-year cycle, updating is done in the third year of the cycle. The counties with four or five year cycle do no updating or indexing to reflect current value as do those using a six year cycle. However, in order to utilize the alternative five-year cycle, the assessor and the county legislative body must agree to its use.
Assessors are also required to maintain the property maps of the county (T C A 64-5-604). The assessor also makes "back" assessments of property, land or corrections of erroneous assessments within certain time limitations (T C A 67-1-1001).
A more detailed description of the duties of the assessor is found in the County Property Tax Manual, a CTAS publication that may be found in the Resource Center at the CTAS website www.ctas.utk.edu. Also, the Division of Property Assessments of the Office of the Comptroller of the Treasury provides assessment manuals for the assessor.