Riley County appraiser prepares bill for state senate

The final modifications are being made to a bill that  is intended to help property owners throughout the state of Kansas.

There are four areas targeted by Senate Bill 348, the main focus being tax appeals.

“This legislation is primarily targeted at preventing tax rep situations that have become a waste of everyone’s time and money,” county appraiser Greg McHenry said.

Tax representatives and some of their practices have created issues in Riley County over the past few years according to McHenry who added, “We’re asking that when they come they bring any evidence that they have or want to discuss just as we’re going to provide all of our appraisal data when they come to our office.”

Another one of the bill’s initiatives will be to expedite work for both Kansas residents and appraisers departments.

“It (this portion of the bill) allows for some cost savings in the future because it would allow for email notifications for value changes.”

The change would apply to both personal property and real property. “Going digital” would also allow appraiser’s departments to eliminate paper records. Riley County has maintained hard copies of property valuations dating back to 1989 according to McHenry.

Another component to the bill concerns watercraft in the state, specifically where those vehicles are located and how they are taxed.

“Our county as well as others that have a lot of watercraft spend a lot of time trying to determine who’s being honest and who isn’t when it comes to being honest for tax status for watercraft.”

Should the bill pass, watercraft owners would have property valuation notices sent to their home address. Property taxes would be paid in the county in which the property owner resides, as opposed to the county where the watercraft is located.

The local government committee will meet next Tuesday, February 7, to decide whether or not to send the bill to the state level.