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A very good article on the Assessor’s Race and the three candidates. By now most of you reading my blog know that I’ve endorsed Jon Brooks. I believe the office needs new blood, and while I appreciate Johanna’s offer of service and don’t believe that politics should play much of a role in the position, I was very impressed with Brooks when I met him.
There are a few issues and it’ll be interesting to see how each candidate addresses them in debate. One is the taxation of parcels while rendering them legally illegitimate (I’m not sure this is really the Assessor’s problem so much as the Planning Department’s, but it does warrant discussion). Another issue is the current Assessor’s policy of refusing to process parcels which have been conveyed and the conveyances recorded when the conveyances are deemed not in compliance with TPZ regs, Williamson Act regs, etc. The Assessor doesn’t decide who the owner is, but the refusal to process the changes make it impossible to sell or convey the properties, and there are legitimate questions as to whether the Assessor’s Office should involve itself in even passive compliance actions. And there is the alleged failure of the current Assessor to adequately notice property owners of decline-in-value options. And there are complaints of inaccessibility, particularly online. The article touches on each of these issues, and others.
I believe there’s a debate coming up. I’m told it actually won’t be the first Humboldt County Assessor candidates’ debate. But it’s still a rarity worth marveling over.