Douglas tax bills may not be lower |

Douglas tax bills may not be lower

GARDNERVILLE, Nev. – While Douglas County’s overall assessed valuation is dropping, few property owners are seeing a decrease in their tax bills.

Tax bills arrived at property owners’ addresses from the Douglas County treasurer’s office last week.

Clerk-Treasurer Ted Thran said the phone call volume was average for the time of year.

“We’re receiving no more calls than normal,” he said. “We still get phone calls, but that’s good so we can help people.”

In Nevada, taxes are based on assessed valuation of property. But because of the rapid increase in values earlier in the decade, the Nevada Legislature approved a means to cap the amount a tax bill can be raised any year. Residential property was capped at 3 percent.

But the Legislature didn’t forgive the difference between the cap and the actual assessed value of the property, so there are two columns on the tax bill, Thran said.

The left hand column gives the amount taxes would have gone up had there been no abatement, and the right hand columns gives the actual tax owed.

None of which helps anyone who’s home was built after the Legislature implemented abatement in 2005.

The newer the home, the higher the tax bill, so the owners of a home that was built before abatement pay considerably less in property taxes than those whose home were built a few years later.

Minden Town Board Chairman Bob Hadfield expressed concern that people will think that because the assessed valuation goes down, that means taxes go down, too.

“This really needs to be explained,” he said.

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