General Information About the Assessor
The assessor is appointed, not elected. The Board of Supervisors, mayors of all incorporated cities, and a member from each school district within the jurisdiction comprise the Conference Board. The Conference Board appoints a qualified applicant to the assessor position for a period of six years. The current term expires December 31, 2015.
The primary duty and responsibility of the assessor is to measure, list and value all real property within his/her jurisdiction except that which is otherwise provided for by law. The assessor's responsibilities fall under the direction of the Iowa Department of Revenue. The statutory date of assessment is January 1st. The assessor determines a full or partial value of new construction, or improvements depending upon the state of completion as of January 1st.
Assessed Values, Rollbacks, and Levy Rates
Each year, a levy rate is determined by the levy authorities in our county to meet the funding obligations for the current fiscal year. These funds meet the budget requirements that pay for our schools, county hospital, community college, police and fire protection, road maintenance and other services. The levy rate is applied to each $1,000 of taxable value of a property. Currently residential and agricultural property owners are not taxed at 100% of the assessed value of the property, although, commercial and industrial property is taxed at 100% of the assessed value. The taxable value is determined by the auditor after applying the state ordered “rollback” percentages to the assessed value. Any applicable exemption and/or credit is then deducted. The amount of taxes property owners pay is then determined by multiplying the levy rate by the taxable value.
Petitioning to Change my Assessment
Each year any property owner who is dissatisfied with their assessment may appeal to the Assessor in an informal appeal April 2nd through April 25th and/or petition the Board of Review against that assessment between April 2nd and April 30th. For current petition forms and instructions please contact the assessor's office or click on Assessment Appeal Forms and Instructions on the left side of this page after April 2nd. For more information please call our office at 515-433-0508.
What is the Board of Review?
The Board of Review members are appointed by the Conference Board and may have three or five members. As per state statute, one member must be a farmer, one a licensed realtor and one who has knowledge in the building or construction field. This is an independent board to which property owner(s) may appeal if they feel their assessment is excessive or inequitable. The Board of Review has broad powers including the right to increase or decrease any assessment. If a property owner is not satisfied with the board’s decision, they can file an appeal with the Property Assessment Appeal Board or District Court.
The Assessor’s office can answer questions regarding property values--515-433-0508.
The Treasurer's office can answer your questions regarding taxes--515-433-0510.