City Government

Tax Hike Due This Year AND Next!

The GUARDIAN has received several inquiries regarding property taxes following the assessment notices recently sent out by county assessors.

The short version is this. YOUR TAX BILL WILL BE HIKED!

Local politicos will brag they have “lowered the levy rate,” but when the value is increased the only way to profit is to sell your property and leave town. For example if the levy is 10% and the value of the property is $100, the tax is $10. But if the value is $150 and the levy remains the same the tax is $15 which amounts to a 50% hike even though there is no rate hike.

Cities and counties love the boom times because they get rich off building permits (Boise City has an extra $1 million). Local budget increases are limited to 3%, but that includes the value of new construction and which allows for even more government spending.

Property values are assessed as of December 31. We are told there is already close to a 20% increase in the Boise area this year. That means a probable hike in the 2019 tax bill as well.

The higher values are a direct result of growth encouraged by state and local politicos. They offer tax breaks which encourage new businesses to move in with more people who drive up the price of housing.

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. They have to account for all of those giveaways and make the average home owner who actually lives here pay for the developers free for all programs.

    Take Nampa for example, the taxpayers here will pay more for the cost of a so-called DEQ / EPA mandate that has been 15 years in the making. Now, the shortsightedness of the politicos has came down to a voter approved tax increase to alleviate something that should have been addressed years ago.

    Don’t worry, the we know better than you bunch, has everything under control except growth.

  2. As a long time resident of Ada County I have seen my property taxes increase from about $180.00/year in 1967 to over $1600.00/year. This is based on an inflated value set by the assessor who says my property is now worth around $225,000 and which I paid $23,000 for in 1967. The only way I would ever see that kind of money for my property is if I sell and leave the state. I don’t want to sell and leave Idaho, but as a retired individual on a fixed income I will soon be faced with that reality as very shortly I will not be able to afford paying the county over $150.00/month. Since moving to Idaho the quality of life has been going down hill. Increased taxes, increased traffic, worse air quality, etc.

    We live in the Meridian impact area, still in Ada County where the tax burden is somewhat less than if we lived in Meridian. That could change any time if Meridian decides to annex us and we would have no choice in the decision. Not being in the Meridian City limits we have no vote in the matter, Ada County allows Meridian to make all the decisions about what our future will be. We do not have a voice in either Ada County or Meridian government.

    I would like to see the State legislature make several changes.

    1. Allow impact area residents to vote in city government elections. Give us a voice over our destiny.

    2. Impose a property tax freeze on property. Base the taxes on what the property originally sold for. Increases can only take place when the property changes hands.

    3. Agricultural property subject to development should be taxed at the development basis. Not on an agricultural bases. Case in point: Property located at the Eagle road and interstate which is used for the corn maze. Low property taxes since it is agricultural but worth millions for development.

    Will any of these suggestions take place. I doubt it.

  3. So Jim wants to make the tax system like California’s where anyone who buys a home today pays more of the tax burden than the person who bought yesterday. Why don’t you check out how well that is working for California as people are moving here in droves due to failing infrastructure, poor schools, public safety that is severely deficient, and other taxes and fees that are spiraling out of control. I say that everyone should pay their fair share, business, individual, hospitals, churches, and government agencies (see fees in lieu of taxes). We need to stop pandering to businesses like Micron, Scentsy, Simplot and others that take advantage of tax exemptions at the expense of everyone else. Hospitals that claim not for profit status, pay nothing in property taxes, and as they absorb medical practices the tax burden simply shifts more and more to the individual. As another solution we need to severely scrutinize government spending. A prime example is the city of Boise that continually takes the maximum allowable amount of increases even though the expansion of Boise is minimal compared with other municipalities that are experiencing rapid growth. There are many facets to this problem and many more means of limiting the impact on the common resident. However, adopting anything that California has done would be flatly stupid.

  4. Won’t be long before we will need our own version of Prop 13.

  5. Any Predictions?
    Jun 11, 2018, 5:14 pm

    Planning my exit from Boise. Any predictions on how long the crazy Californian invasion will last? Hoping to sell close to the peak.

  6. Peak Californians is not the issue, peak debt is.

    The Federal Govt has acquired a debt burden that is unservicable by any possible stretch of the imagination, consumer (citizen) debt continues to grow out of control, and now your Economic Overlords ( the Federal Reserve (which isn’t a Federal Govt organization, but a cabal of greedy bankers)) are upping the interest rates which is gauranteed to blow up the nations debters and trigger a depression.

    Sell now while people can still get bank loans to buy a house, or plan to hold your house for a long time till the economy recovers.

    I left 2 years ago and relocated in a idyllic place with a slow way of life and am VERY happy i ran from the out of control growth situation. I’ve seen maybe a line of 40 cars in a row all at once since i’ve been here. Big traffic jam!!

    I left because of worsening air quality winter and summer, the F35 noise threat, traffic, weather, corrupt politicians, and the seemingly endless supply of vacuous people.

  7. Lets not forget Team Dave’s plan to present a levy proposal to subsidize affordable housing and ACHD’s desire to seek a significant increase to vehicle registration fees. Ain’t these boom times just wonderful!!!

    I am so grateful the state politico’s are refusing to fall for the local option sales tax ruse that Team Dave so desperately wants.

  8. Any Predictions?
    Jun 12, 2018, 6:44 am

    The one thing Boise is missing is big city crime numbers. Bieter and friends are doing everything they can to change this. Crime needs three additional elements to firmly take root.
    1) Wide area mass transit running well into the night.
    2) Widespread low income housing.
    3) A criminal friendly police policy.

    There are wealthy liberal idiots supporting Bieter and dem candidates who are ashamed of our low crime numbers. Watch as this liberal idiot money floods the upcoming elections.

  9. Not quite sure it is “a direct result of growth encouraged by state and local politicos”

    Boise is going to inherently grow.

    Even if the politicos opposed growth, many people in the rest of country are going to come to Boise for the wonderfulness of Boise.

    Just like EVERYONE here posting once moved here.

  10. Congratulation Jim! ! !
    Your house appreciated about 4.5% annual rate over the last 50 years.

    As did your property taxes.
    It’s just simple math.

    What would YOU expect for real estate?

    It would suck if it did only 1%, right?

  11. Oh Prediction, would love to know where you found your idyllic escape. For us not too long ago it was Boise, but now we are wondering about Plan B.

  12. More taxes to come!!!
    Jun 12, 2018, 1:05 pm

    Yet to add to your tax enjoyment:

    1. Taxes for a new stadium
    2. Taxes for more roads
    3. Taxes as a local option – Pushed by Dems
    4. Taxes for CWI expansion (ONLY Ada and Canyon County!)
    5. Taxes for the homeless
    6. Taxes for “Services” to add to to State coffers
    7. Taxes on internet sales
    8. Tax deferrals to CCDC as they expand “renewal” area that do not need renewed.
    9. Taxes …..
    10. Taxes……….

  13. What a bunch of crabbing.
    If you think your assessment is out of line, appeal to the county board of equalization. The assessor’s office is generally responsive and will explain the process to justify the valuation. Sometimes the value will be adjusted at the staff level. If you remain unsatisfied, go in front of the county commissioners and argue your point. This has no impact on the levy rate which is set by the locals in their budgeting process.

  14. Something needs to be done about Idaho’s property tax system. One per cent initiatives have failed in the past, and with a special session in 2006, Idaho property taxes were reduced but overall taxes stayed the same via a shift to the 6% sales tax. It is time for some real property tax reform.

    My 92-year old mother has lived in the same house since 1981, and her youngest child completed high school in 1978. But 40 years later a large portion of her fixed income is taken annually by school bonds, school levies, and property taxes. Is this a fair system? Idaho’s property tax system needs to be fixed!

  15. The value of my home has nothing to do with the cost of most of the services I receive.

  16. What is it with you people? I dislike the growth as much as the next guy, if not more, but the whining about property taxes is just too much.

    Keep in mind that there’s a lot of value in services, even if you don’t directly receive them. Great example: I live in a relatively low-crime area in Boise. As a result, you could argue I don’t get my value in what I pay for police coverage. But I like know that if and when crime grows in my area, the service exists. And I’m glad to know I can go to other parts of town and still feel safe. Same goes for fire protection.

    On taxes for education: blame the Legislature. They’ve been shirking their Constitutional responsibility in our state for YEARS! And even people who don’t have anyone directly served by the education system at this point in time have a stake in it: keep in mind things like Social Security are based on taxing wages. Better education = better job opportunities = more SS tax paid = hopefully older people better off.

    Now, I’ll agree something needs to be done to keep older people in their home. If the current “circuit breaker” program isn’t getting the job done, let’s look at that.

    In summary, I don’t like paying taxes. And my family does not directly consume many taxpayer provided services. But I still understand how important those services are for my community.

  17. erico49 raises the most important question in this discussion, are you getting value for the taxes paid. I pay approximately $500 per month for the services provided by all the local governments. I feel that is a good value which could not be provided for less or with better services from the private sector. My children received excellent educations from the BSD and I have no problem supporting the system now that my children are raised. I owe it to the community. My view is generally the same with the other taxing districts. I may disagree with a policy now and then, but the locals are functioning in their respective districts. Simply stated, are you receiving value for your tax dollar?

  18. My Two Cents
    Jun 13, 2018, 11:34 am

    Maybe we should consider something like Proposition 13 that passed in California back in the late 70s, where the annual increase in property taxes is restricted to 1% or 2% unless and until there is a sale. Only upon change in ownership can the massive reassessment of value be done, which in turn of course would trigger significantly higher taxes. I think that is how it works. Worth looking into anyway. It certainly protects homeowners who stay in their home from getting hit with massive increases along the way. I may be wrong about this but I think that is what Prop 13 was about.

    EDITOR NOTE–You are totally correct. The only problem is we DID pass a 1% limit and the all knowing legislature flipped the taxpayers the bird and recpealed what we had passed.

  19. TF boy.. I agree. I am not questioning the need for supporting public schools.. or fire.. or police. I just think there ought to be some relationship between the services provided by departments and the amount I pay. That determination has nothing to do with property value for the most part.

    EDITOR NOTE–Also there should not be exemptions for businesses like SIMPLOT, PAYETTE BREWING, and SCENTSY. They and their employees all consume services and should not rely on the rest of us to provide services to them for free.

  20. I wish we had California’s Prop 13 1% law. As ed said, We tried. Something needs to be done. How about doubling the Homeowners’ Exemption? Or increasing it at the same % increase of one’s home assessment.

  21. Everybody wants Prop 13, but nobody seems to get that this is one of the prime examples of what is going wrong in California, and why so many residents are moving elsewhere, including to this area. Additionally, when a property transfers, certain individuals and more and more businesses that are in the know are working the system to where when they transfer their property to a new owner, their tax rate is passed on. Part of the reason that properties are so expensive is because of Prop 13 encouraging real estate stagnation where people hold onto their homes like grim death. All Prop 13 does is remove all equity in taxation, meaning that if you come in last, you pay the most. Idaho’s system is principally founded on people’s ability to pay. That said, you live in a more expensive home, you likely have the ability to pay more for services, received or not. However, you might say well I don’t use this, so why am I paying for it? Or my aging parent has not had children in schools for decades. However, do we not want the most educated populous that we can achieve? There is a reason why Idaho has low wages, and education is primary. Additionally when you have that heart attack when you raging over your tax bill, do you not want EMS to show up?

    Now, money does not fix everything, nor does rampant spending on stupid projects like a trolley system for our fat mayor to ride around on his lunch hour. Or a sports stadium that neighbors and other valley residents do not want, and will be likely ignored like the many other sporting endeavors attempted to be brought to this valley (see Idaho Stampede, Boise Burn, etc, etc..).

    Where taxing authorities ratchet up their budgets is with new construction growth, hence the 3% plus growth limitation placed on taxing authorities. Growth comes from new construction, changes in land use, and cessation of Urban Renewal districts, see (Central District UR ending 8/2017), which taxing authorities can levy those assessment dollars to increase their budgets. Now you might ask, doesn’t that just occur for one year? The answer is no. That increase in those budgets goes on and grows by that 3% plus growth “limitation.” My opinion should be that budgetary growth should not exceed the nominal rate of inflation and the “growth factor” should be limited to the percentage of growth experienced within that taxing district in a given year (by population, parcel count, or some other factor).

  22. I encourage the Editors to post a history of the cited past legislature repeal of the taxpayer passage of a 1% prop tax cap. I personally am unaware of this history. When did the cap get voted on, who in the legislature initiated the repeal, etc. This would certainly help those of us interested in seeing a revival of prop tax cap legislation, or essentially a rewrite of the current state statute, 63-205 and an attendant rewrite of the Idaho State Tax Commission Property Tax Administrative Rules.

    I also encourage all of those reading and posting here to contact your state and local representatives, your district state reps/senator and your county commissioners, about rising property tax assessments.

    One of the sticking points for *everyone* is failing critical infrastructure and the decoupling of any increasing property tax paid to cover this critical infrastructure. Not right.

  23. Where are you getting your info of Prop 13 killing California?A factual answer is that California’s budget grew astronomically because of public employee retirement pay and benefits, double dipping within California’s public employment system, fraud, and a welfare system that grew out of control. Property tax limitations force the government sector to be efficient.

  24. Rick, Prop 13 is just one of many things, including a few of those you listed that are killing California. However, stripping local government funding for schools, roads, public safety and other essentials have created vast areas of disparity in California. I agree with the need for government efficiency, but California’s is a double edged sword. Prop 13 limits the tax rates, which I don’t think is a bad thing, but where it goes wrong is that it limits that assessments on properties to the prices in which they were purchased. This creates vast inequities in the distribution of taxes. Additionally there is a transfer clause that allows properties to be transferred without reassessment. This is an avenue that large corporations have found a way to utilize to transfer properties with a grandfathered tax rate on the property. This kind of disparity in the distribution of the tax burden not only creates inequity in taxation, but creates an environment of real estate stagnation, which with the law of supply and demand drives prices to astronomical levels.

    Now as for government efficiency, I might ask you the question how efficient is it to have a state agency act on behalf of a local district for any purpose (school funding, public safety, etc)? This lends itself to the same argument between state and federal powers, wherein states are going to be more efficient in many facets of managing the governmental business of the state. Moreover, local government is going to be more efficient than the state in handling governmental business at the local level. A good example of that is the frustration that local jurisdictions in the state of Idaho see that are not in the Boise area. They are often times ignored. When the school maintenance in operations was removed from Property Tax in 2006, funding for those operations were to be the responsibility of the state, with the exception of one school district; Boise. Because of its “Capital City” pull Boise School district was able to pull-off special treatment in this legislation, which also leads to disparate funding of other school districts, hence all of the supplemental bonding that is occurring for maintenance in operations in West Ada School district, among the many other districts throughout the state.

  25. Yossarian_22
    Jun 16, 2018, 3:26 pm

    My Bench home and property jumped from 169K to 219K and I got on the phone with Assessor and he did not budge one bit….aka “responsive?”

    He Demsplained why my home was worth so much more and yadda yadda. I told him that I am NOT planning to move and just want to live in Boise and not ATM my house. I don’t believe I’m getting my tax monies’ worth if they won’t even teach the kiddies how all this money system exists in the first place.

    Everything is overpriced because the system will print whatever money it wants to overvalue it. If trillions of dollars exist, you can bet that things will be priced for as much as a market can be talked into paying for it. If banks could not just print at will, then stupid sky high prices could not be paid for stuff that’s most likely 90% too high.

  26. Chukarhunterboise
    Nov 9, 2018, 5:39 am

    Does anyone know when or how to start the process of getting the home owners exemption amount increased? Since the average value and sales prices are creeping up to over $400k, folks who live in homes assessed at this value are not seeing any significant savings for property taxes. Help out those poor Californians, right?

  27. I’m quite amazed at the back and forth between pro property taxes and against. This folks is exactly what politicians thoroughly want!
    The never ending examples of pros and cons regarding property taxes is just that. You have people that have raised 1 or 2 kids and are retired still paying inflated increases. You have people with 6 or 7 kids getting a a benefit from those with no kids and the retirees.
    I live in Meridian, next to one of the few undeveloped areas where I know the homeowners are elderly, do I believe they should be paying g equivalent taxes
    (ten acres)imposed by the incompetent city of Meridian, hell no.
    Take a look at your assessment bill/notice. CWI, West ADA recreation, Meridian library, the real questionable one that is pretty vague-ADA COUNTY!
    In all sincerity, property taxes are criminal. Think about it? There are many that work to pay off all their Bill’s, yet the local governments have a NOOSE always prepared for tightening.
    Fairness starts by a abolishing property taxes and raising the sales tax and gas 10 cents a gallon. These two additions would more than surpass property taxes. Also the revanues would be substantial do to the hundreds of thousands of tourists, and travelers passing through.
    I could continue to give examples of alternatives, however,many love to stick to the current bickering over the antiquated tax system, just as the representatives like it, because they know the majority of citizens don’t recognize INCREMENTALISM.

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