by Suzanne Vernon
For the Pathfinder
July 30, 1998
Missoula County tax appraisers have been visiting properties in the Seeley Swan this summer, reviewing files and updating information about property improvements and changes.
Local homeowners will be notified next spring of any increase in their assessmentsand tax bills.
The recent activity is part of routine work done by appraisers in the Missoula County tax assessor's office.
However, this is the first time in many years that appraisers have conducted a systematic review of all properties in the Seeley Swan area.
"We're basically looking for things that haven't been picked up previously," tax appraiser Ron Pierson said Monday. "We're making sure records are correct," he explained, adding that appraisers have found some properties where improvements made up to 20 years ago were not yet in the files. The improvements will now be added to the current files. Property owners will receive notice of any new valuations early next year, and any increases or decreases will be reflected in the 1999 tax bills, Pierson said.
Pierson said that of the seven appraisers who work in Missoula County, three are currently working on properties in the Seeley Swan area. He explained that, although the assessor's office tries to update files in a timely manner, some properties are not reviewed every year, especially in the more rural areas of the county, because of a lack of manpower at the county level. "There just isn't enough of us to cover all of these parcels," he said, explaining that seven appraisers are responsible for 35,000 properties in Missoula County.
The current review of property values in the Seeley Swan portion of Missoula County is "normal procedure" Pierson said, and is separate from the most recent statewide reappraisal of land values which was conducted in 1995 and 1996 and reported in 1997.