Board of Assessors
Hours: Monday 1pm-5pm; Tuesday 9am-4:30pm; Wednesday 1pm-8pm; Thursday 9:30am-4pm
Meets: 9:30am on the first Tuesday of the month AND 6:30pm on the third Wednesday after the first Tuesday of the month
Phone: 413-655-2300 x315
Board of Assessors
Peter Persoff, Chairman
Dick Roussin, Assessor
Neil Barrocas, Assessor
The primary function of the Assessors, according to State Law, is to determine the "full and fair cash value" of real property. Real property is all residential, commercial and industrial land and buildings within the city limits. Every five years, the Massachusetts Department of Revenue must certify all real and personal property values, represent full and fair cash as of the assessment date, which is January 1st, before the town is allowed to issue real estate and personal property tax bills.
NOTICE TO ALL PROPERTY OWNERS:
A friendly reminder that according to Hinsdale Town By-Law #35, section 2, all buildings in the town are required to have a number and that number is to be displayed prominently on the front of the building. This is especially imperative for all emergency services (police, fire, EMT) to easily find the building and not lose precious time in the event of an emergency. Thank you for your anticipated cooperation.
- Hinsdale Board of Assessors
Assistant Assessor David Zagorski
TOWN GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM (GIS) AND ASSESSORS MAPS CAN BE ACCESSED BY CLICKING...
Property Record Cards can be accessed by clicking on this link: http://gis.vgsi.com/hinsdalema/
Property Inspection Program: What It Is and Why the Assessors Must Do It
The collection and maintenance of current and accurate property inventory data is a critical element in the development of uniform, fair market values. Accordingly, the Bureau of Local Assessment (BLA) requires that communities re-inspect all town property, including tax-exempt parcels, at least once every nine years. (See BLA Guidelines for Development of a Minimum Reassessment Program.)
During the normal course of work, the assessing office performs routine inspections. These inspections are initiated due to the issuance of a building permit, the transfer or sale of a property, and an abatement of taxes request. During an inspection, the assessor gains entry to a property and reviews the current condition, taking measurements and noting any changes on the property record card. These inspections are necessary to estimate new growth and to determine whether interim year or 5-year property value adjustments are warranted based on changing market conditions. They also enable the assessors to maintain an up-to-date property database and can contribute to the community’s cyclical re-inspection program.
A cyclical re-inspection program involves completing an interior and exterior inspection of all property over a multi-year period, not exceeding nine years. Based on community parcel count and the number of routine inspections conducted annually, the assessors schedule additional inspections each year to meet the BLA timeframe. Recollection priorities are determined from a database query of the last recorded date of entry for all parcels.
Cyclical inspections may be done by in-house staff and/or with the assistance of a part-time data collector, fee appraiser or appraisal firm. From these inspections, any changes in the properties are entered on the property record card and keyed into the assessor’s computerized database. For communities that fall behind in their cyclical program, there is the option of contracting with an appraiser, or appraisal firm, to perform a full measure and list. The purpose is to complete visits to all remaining uninspected properties over a brief period of time, which typically can be very expensive.
Whether prompted by a building permit, a transfer of title or abatement request, or whether part of a cyclical re-inspection program or measure and list effort, a program of regular inspections enables a community to maintain the most current property database and helps ensure that all taxpayers are assessed fairly, and pay their fair share of the property tax burden.
HOW TAX CLASSIFICATION WORKS
Each year the Board of Assessors classifies all real property into one of four classes: Residential, Open Space, Commercial or Industrial. The Town uses these classifications to decide the percentage of the tax levy (the amount of funds the Town must raise by taxation) that will be paid by each class of real property owners and personal property owners. Before the tax rate can be set, the Select Board holds a public hearing to decide whether to tax all classes of property at their full and fair cash valuation share of the tax levy, which results in a single tax rate, or to reduce the share of the tax levy paid by the residential and open space property owners and shift those taxes to commercial, industrial and personal property taxpayers. This results in a two separate tax rates (a split rate). The Select Board has various options such as an Open Space Discount, Residential Exemption and Small Commercial Exemption that may be adopted but the tax levy remains the same. Adoption of these options essentially shifts the tax burden between classes. After careful analysis of the various options and factors available to the Town and while remaining compliant to the Department of Revenue regulations, the Board of Assessors presents their recommendations to the Select Board. After discussion, the Select Board then votes on either single or split rate.