By Max Goodwin
Jackson County is still hearing appeals from taxpayers on the assessed value of property by county assessors for property taxes this year.
Jackson County received over 54,000 appeals by taxpayers on the value assessed by the county on their real estate property taxes. There are still over 14,000 of these appeal cases that remain open due to the inability to meet with the responsible taxpayer.
The county sent emails with details for online appeal meetings to taxpayers, but many of those have ended up in the spam folders of those who received them. Taxpayers report having never seen the email.
“We’ve gone through about 35,000 of them already. But if you haven’t heard anything from us, check your spam folder,” said Jackson County Administrator Troy Schulte last month, talking with South Kansas City residents at a South Kansas City Alliance meeting.
Jackson County Legislator Sean Smith said that a change he would like to see made in the future is rather than assigning taxpayers a specific date and time to meet with for the appeal, he would like to see it be available to the taxpayer to schedule a meeting time for the appeal that fits into their schedule.
Emails were the only form of contact that the county sent to those appealing their assessed values. There was no phone call, mail, or in-person contact to see whether anyone had received notice of their appeal or to inform them they had missed it.
Jackson County has now emailed invoices for 2023, due by December 31, and some taxpayers who never had their appeal reviewed have received those bills for the original value that they are appealing.
There is still time to sort out the appeals process with a Jackson County Board of Equalization officer, though residents have found that it takes time to find answers or talk to staff over the phone. Most of the assessment process was handled by seasonal staff no longer employed by the county.
The quickest way to have an appeals hearing is to go in person to the Jackson County Office Building at 1300 Washington Street.
“If you really want to resolve it, come down to 1300 Washington on Tuesdays or Thursdays and walk in, and we’ll handle you right then and there,” Shulte said.
Scheduled appeal reviews are still occurring as county taxpayers receive their current bill. The Jackson County website lists hearings scheduled until the end of this month.