Michelle just wanted a fair property valuation, yet she felt bullied and intimated to drop her appeal. When she sued the Auditor's Office, the local judge called the Board of Revision's policies "a trap for the unwary" and purposefully disingenuous. This is why we need change in the County Auditor's Office. Our taxpayers deserve more!
Read Michelle's letter here:
In 2015, our Harpersfield home’s value was raised by $70,000, in one tax cycle. We chose to dispute this evaluation, hired an appraiser and presented our case in front of the Board of Revision. The meeting with the BOR seemed one sided, not to our benefit. When we presented the case, the board was constantly trying to discredit our appraisal, did not take anything said seriously and expected us to give up.
After the BOR denied our disputed evaluation, we then decided to appeal the case. After following the exact directions given to us by the auditor’s office for filing an appeal: filing at the Clerk of Courts with several copies of appeal, and was told by the clerk she would take the auditor’s office copy down to them, I didn’t have to. This is when the auditor’s office chose to throw my appeal out, again. They claimed because it was not directly taken to their office they were throwing it out.
Judge Gary Yost agreed with us on appeal, in Case No. 2015 CV 589 he stated the auditor’s instructions are “actually misleading and can become a trap for the unwary.” Judge Yost then wrote that it is disingenuous for the auditor’s office to have policies meant to have appeals dismissed later. The case went up to the 11th District Court of Appeals where my husband and I also were upheld.
At one mediation we were told by auditor staff that they had six ways to throw this case out. Does that sound like government officials that work for the people? Mediations were always started with the auditor’s office telling us that someone, who was also disputing a similar case, had decided to drop the case. In other words, we should do the same. Finally, the original appeal case went to court where Judge Yost and the magistrate ordered and agreed upon our evaluation value.
I write this totally out of my comfort zone to simply say this, we felt bullied and pressured to drop our case and accept the unfair value. How we were treated is not right at all and shouldn’t be continued. If this happened to us, costing hours and hours and thousands of dollars, this could happen to you. We need change in the auditor’s office this November. I urge you to get out and vote and make the change we need! Vote this November for Dave Thomas for County Auditor!