17 February 2008

We Ain't So Bad

If you weren't thinking about property taxes on the 14th - and who was? - then you probably missed the story in the Courier News Local section with the headline "Property revaluation in Bound Brook."

Bound Brook has not had a property revaluation in 20 years. Consequently, property in the borough is currently assessed at about 47% of its true market value. And Bound Brook isn't alone. There are at least four other Somerset County municipalities with assessments that are around 50% of market value - South Bound Brook, North Plainfield, Somerville, and Rocky Hill.

How could this happen? Are all of the local officials in these towns corrupt? - manipulating assessments for personal gain? If that's the case, then the whole county is corrupt!

Except, of course, Hillsborough - where assessed values have not slipped nearly that much, and where our officials are planning to fix our own assessment program so that it is the envy of the other towns!


  1. Come on Greg

    You know as well as I do what happened here in Hillsborough! 7-22-12.

    Can you figure that out?

  2. It seems that you either do not know the facts in this important matter Mr. Gillette, or you are covering up for the politicians who helped finance your campaign for Bd of Ed and who gave you a nice political appointment. No matter, here are the facts.

    While there are a few towns in Somerset County and indeed across the state of New Jersey where the ratio of assessed versus market value is way out of alignment, the majority of the towns - especially the well-run larger towns - follow the annual reassessment program. Every expert in municipal assessment, from the state that wrote the laws, to the County that enforces those laws, to every good town with competent elected officials, you will hear the same piece of information!

    The annual program of reassessing properties is the lowest cost and most effective way to maintain property assessments and when that is followed properly, there is no need for a very expensive Revaluation!

    But, circa 2003, the Republican-controlled Township Committee killed the annual program to cover their incompetence. They even proudly proclaimed their stoppage in numerous years of campaign flyers! There is no doubt that they stopped it. They took us out of the program that is the lowest cost method, and most effective way, to maintain all property assessments.

    So instead of paying a small amount each year to maintain assessments, our ratio dropped from a very good 90% in the late 1990's when I was in office, to a low of 64% last year. I warned the town about the upcoming Revaluation a couple of years ago because they law is clear - ANY town where the ratio drops below 80% can be made to go through an expensive Revaluation process.

    So here we are and it was inevitable! We taxpayers of Hillsborough will have to come up with another $1 Million to $2 Million out of our pockets to pay for the incompetence and political actions of our elected officials. IT was not necessary. All they had to do was FIX the problem that was under their control but instead they took political cover, blamed the program for their incompetence, and as a result we taxpayers will be penalized!

    As you can see comparing your statements to those based upon facts, your claim that our elected officials are doing a good job is totally off the mark. In your mind hitting the taxpayers with another $2 Million in taxes is OKAY??? Stopping the program that works perfectly well all across the state was a GOOD thing? Trying to claim the problem in the small list of towns you provided makes us look good (???) when in fact, we are in the group of towns with PROBLEMS and NOT in the list of towns that successfully exercise the state program each and every year!?

    Your post therefore makes no sense, unless of course your goal was to blindly support the local elected officials and the Hillsborough Republican Party to whom you owe a great deal.

  3. Mr. van Lier, I appreciate your comments, especially considering the time you have spent both in, and observing, our municipal government.

    I believe you may have missed my earlier post on this topic, as it has moved off of the front page.


    In this earlier post I clearly left open the possibility that our 2003 township committee made a mistake by suspending rolling assessments - and I have no problem reiterating that right here. I also clearly stated that the cost of the revaluation would be at least $1 million - a cost that will be borne by the taxpayers. I fail to see how any of this is a "cover-up".

    The Courier News story about Bound Brook only mentioned those towns that were around 50% of assessed value. it did not list the Somerset County towns that were at 50 to 1000% - and I also do not have that list. But I would be very happy to review such a listing, if you or anyone can provide me with one, so as to put Hillsborough in its proper ranking within the county.

    Now, to address your personal attack on me - My campaign for the Board of Ed. was not financed by politicians, but rather by many, many individual contributors who appreciated that I was willing to do the hard work that it takes to get elected - like personally going door-to-door to 750 homes in a 3 week period to get my message out to the voters.

    I'm sure you must have gone door-to-door in at least ONE of your election campaigns, so you can appreciate the effort.

    Again, thanks for your comments, and I look forward to your continued contribution to the blog.

  4. 08844 - you will have to give me a clue - I don't get it!

  5. Mr. Gillette, you are most certainly doing everything in your power to cover up serious mistakes and political shenanigans by the Hillsborough Republican Party! Your conclusion right in the title of the recent post - "We Ain't So Bad" - is ridiculous and ignores the facts by itself, but when combined with your previous comments . . . "Did our township committee do the right thing by killing the rolling reassessment program a few years ago? Clearly they were being responsive to residents - something we heard a lot about during last year's CSC hearings." and "My assessment is that they are at all times looking out for the best interests of the residents and the town - yesterday, today, and tomorrow." it becomes apparent to the well-informed that you are NOT being objective!

    Since it is no worse for our ratio to be at 40% than at 50%, then your comparison criteria used to claim Hillsborough isn't as "bad" as these other towns is pointless! A lower ratio simply means lower assessed values but combined with higher tax per $100 of assessed value. The fact that our taxes will go UP because we taxpayers must now fork over an added $1 Million to $2 Million to cover the cost of the Revaluation is the critical issue. The secondary but also critical issue is - WHY did Hillsborough decide to leave the annual reassessment program?

    You claim that our elected officials are fixing the program yet there is no evidence anywhere of that! All they did was to STOP the program, which destroyed an excellent ratio, and now forces us taxpayers to dig even deeper into our pockets - all because the Republican Party and our elected officials took political cover!

    And you are excusing them for this!

    To your claim of a personal attack - I did no such thing. I stated pure facts Mr. Gillette. You are a political appointee, right? You spent $20,000 in a joint candidates committee to get on the Bd of Ed, when the usual expenditure in such races is about $500 for signs!!! You ran with political appointees and your campaign violated NJ ELEC laws in exactly the same manner that is typical of the local GOP. Your campign also used the exact same political contractors as the local GOP. Just coincidence???

    So your claim of not taking advantage of political connections and support is vacuous. Much worse however is that you might have gone far astray of ELEC law when you sent a letter to businesses saying that if they wanted to donate more than $300 to your campaign, they could send that payment to a separate, personal account?! That looks suspiciously like an attempt to go around ELEC law instead of complying fully and transparently.

    So what you deem a personal attack is a simple statement of facts. Since it was your own behavior and actions that is being reported, if it makes you look bad than my strong suggestion is that you change your behavior to one with less narrow-minded support of one political group and to form opinions without having to apologize for or cover up for the incompetence and lies of the powers-that-be in Hillsborough.

  6. Mr. van Lier - This blog entry, bad grammar in the title and all, was meant to be an exaggeration - a big extended hyperbole - of the current situation. I would hope that everyone understood that, right from the title. It was not my first post on this topic, and was not meant to lay out all of the facts. That's why I am glad you posted your comments.

    We do not know each other, and I assume that you are not a regular reader of this blog. If either of those was true, you would know that I am not with our our local GOP concerning the 206 bypass, the transit village and train station, the town center, or the PILOT at the VA depot.

    I think the problem for you is that I was against the change in government, and you believe the local GOP got that defeated.

    As I have said before, as an independent I would only expect my opinions to match those of the GOP about 50% of the time. If those particular issues are the ones that are close to your heart, I can't do anything about that. Sorry.

    But please - I respect your opinions, and welcome your contributions here.

  7. Mr. Gillette, you are not focusing but instead you are obfuscating the issues that I've raised. I very clearly and in simple terms showed that your claims regarding the Revaluation and assessments issue is so far away from reality that there must be another reason - a reason aside from facts and logic.

    Stick to the real issues here and stop making things up, like trying to say I have anything against you because of some other issues. Stick to what you said right here and what I said, right here.

    Your claims are that our elected officials, the Township Committee, are doing a good job, that we aren't as bad as was thought because other towns are worse, your failure to point out the most critical issues involved in this topic, and most ridiculous of all is your statement referring to our elected officals - "My assessment is that they are at all times looking out for the best interests of the residents and the town - yesterday, today, and tomorrow."

    I've included numerous facts in support of the logical claim that our Township Committee did NOT do what's best for the town on this critical issue, in fact they caused us to have to pay an EXTRA $1 Million to $2 Million in the budget for a Revaluation that was NOT necessary.

    Yet, you have avoided addressing these items at all!? You steer the focus AWAY from the most critical items. Instead of stating the simple fact that our elected officials made a huge mistake in 2003 by stopping the annual reassessment program you actually made it seem that they were being RESPONSIVE???!!! Please tell us in detail how you reconcile this in light of the fact that they did NOT fix the program or problem - they STOPPED the program which is why we now must come up with another $1 Million in taxes to pay for their political cover-up!

    I don't care who you are or what you've done or not done on anything but I most certainly care if you make statements or claims that are totally inaccurate or ridiculous as in your case.

    In your last response you make no sense at all which makes discussing facts and issues impossible. You wish to wash away the problems with your claim that Hillsborough's assessment issue isn't as bad as other towns, by calling it HYPERBOLE??? No Mr. Gillette, you tried to say Hillsborough basically doesn't have problems because these other towns are WORSE?!

    Naturally I pointed out that your entire premise is defective since measuring towns by ratio has no relevance whatsoever - it makes no difference whether we're at 40% or 60% - so your attempt to say we aren't So Bad is completely without merit.

    Now again, the problem could be that you don't know what you are writing about and so cannot see the issue clearly in which case you shouldn't make claims without information. Coming to any conclusions Mr. Gillette BEFORE you have your facts is not recommended. Otherwise, perhaps you know the facts but choose to cover them up to make up a reality where you WANT the elected officials, your pals, to look good!

    It makes no difference whether you walk lockstep with the local GOP or not. On this important issue, you are way off of reality and cannot support your claims.

    If you think this is incorrect then by all means respond. But stop changing the subject and stop dancing around the most important issues.

  8. Mr. van Lier - you are wrong. You wrote about my "narrow-minded support of one political group". I have countered that,and now you "don't care"?!?!? It is YOU who wish to wash it away.

    I never said our town didn't have problems - with the revaluation or anything else. Only that other towns have those problems too. What? Are they all corrupt? Maybe so. You decide.

    Whether our current or past elected officials are doing a good job on any particular issue is a matter of opinion - and I appreciate yours.

    As for the facts in this case, I appreciate the contributions you have made to this topic. I welcome your contribution on any topic that you know something about - and I include the revaluation on that list.

    Again, I thank you. Not many people will read these comments - perhaps about 100 or so - but those 100 will certainly know more about this topic after reading.

  9. As a brand new resident of Hillsborough (yeah!), I’d like to add my 2 cents…

    I’ve been reading your blog Greg for some time now and I think it’s very informative. I read it mostly to find out new information about Hillsborough and I take your opinions very lightly as I really have no idea who you are…as a blog should be. I know you’re a member of the Board of Ed as you stated in the beginning and you don’t comment on matters related to the schools. Glenn: I appreciate your comments as well although they come across as being a bit angry. You mentioned in your comments that you were an elected official of Hillsborough in the past. I do think a person of your previous rank should fully disclaim what office you held in the past so that readers can decide if you have some type of political subjective opinion as you claim that Greg has.

    I have a question about the revaluation process. When was this done last? Was it ever done? I just bought a house that was built in 1976 and I don’t think a Hillsborough tax assessor has been in the home since the mid 1980s. Doesn’t it make sense to have a revaluation done every 10 or 20 years even if you have an annual reassessment program? No one knows what people do to their houses unless they apply for permits and go the legal route…but some people don’t. We’re talking about 1 to 2 million dollars here which is a lot of money but it’s not like we’re not getting anything out of this. With that said it is pretty clear to me that the township committee did make a mistake by eliminating the reassessment program and not having a plan for anything else to take its place. They should admit to that mistake and move on.

    I have no idea about fundraising for office and have no facts on that matter but I would like to say this… My family came from a town where we had to beg people to be on the Board of Ed. I like competition better! Hillsborough seems to me like a town that has been heading in the right direction for many years. A lot of people I talk to seem to be very involved in the schools, local business, local organizations or local politics. And everyone I’ve met seems to have a positive look on their faces and is happy to be here (Rt. 206 problems aside!). That’s why we moved here.

    I would like to add this…I think there is a huge need for campaign finance reform on the federal and state level. I like the idea that John McCain came up with (back in 2000 I think) about making everyone who files a tax return contribute $3 or $6 to a general campaign fund and make it mandatory that whoever runs for office can only use their share of this fund. That way no special interests get a piece of the newly elected official. Maybe that would work on a local level too.

    Remember, if you guys can't settle this with words there's always Jell-O wrestling! That would be a great fundraising event to raise money for revaluation.

  10. In order to make this discussion fruitful, in fact to have any debate and discussion of value, the points made by each contributor must be responded to lest they lose any value, or perhaps are eroded in favor of those items or issues that the writer decides is important.

    ToO this end, it is clear that I have responded to all pertinent points made by Mr. Gillette while he has avoided the most critical ones I've raised. To wit -

    Statement Number 1 - "Mr. van Lier - you are wrong. You wrote about my "narrow-minded support of one political group". I have countered that,and now you "don't care"?!?!? It is YOU who wish to wash it away."

    Did you not read what I wrote Mr. Gillette, or are you unable to understand? What I said was that I don't care about what you've done or not done in the context of how and why I respond. Your personal issues are of no concern unless and until they provide a conflict of interest or can illuminate a dramatic issue. I went on the explain that you may have many disagreements with your cronies in the Hillsborough Republican Party on small issues, but on the most critical issues, THAT'S most telling.

    And truth be told - you fully supported in fact you assisted the local GOP in the change of government issue (YOU raised this as another issue, not me) and here you are excusing the local GOP from fault.

    YOU claimed that the elected officials are FIXING the assessment problem yet as I've detailed they are NOT fixing it, have not fixed it and worse, they are responsible for placing an EXTRA $2 Million tax burden on us taxpayers!!!??? The fact that you excuse this huge mistake on their part tells us something very important about YOU as well as them.

    Please provide support for you claim that the elected officials are doing what's right for the town. I asked this in the prior post but you avoided it. It seems you are unable to support the numerous statements and claims you make. Are you going to completely avoid answering ANY questions put to you or addressing points raised in direct rebuttal to what you claim?

    Statement #2 - "I never said our town didn't have problems - with the revaluation or anything else. Only that other towns have those problems too. What? Are they all corrupt? Maybe so. You decide."

    Now hold on. I very clearly and specifically showed how the other towns' ratio issues have NOTHING to do with this mess in Hillsborough. But you change the subject by trying to suggest that it's due to corruption and so, "are we all corrupt?" NONSENSE! IT isn't corruption as much as it is incompetence and political cover-ups. I said this before, so are you ignoring this simple fact or are you avoiding it because it does not support your premise?

    What you are trying to say is that Hillsborough is no worse than other towns, which is patently false! MOST towns all across NJ use the state annual reassessment program to maintain their ratios. Hillsborough falls into the BAD group which doesn't prove we're not worse than anyone!!! It PROVES the contrary - that WE are BAD and that our elected officials dropped the ball on this critical issue!

    Statement #3 = "Whether our current or past elected officials are doing a good job on any particular issue is a matter of opinion - and I appreciate yours."

    As I suggested, you wish to wash it away without any factual content by proclaiming it's all just opinion.

    What we are left with Mr. Gillette, is that it is YOUR opinion that our elected officials have not only not done anything wrong, but that they are fixing the problem and that they are working for the betterment of the community. The facts are that our elected officials didn't fix anything, they stopped a program that is successfully applied all across the state and now we taxpayers must fork over ANOTHER $2 Million in taxes to pay for their mistake, and there will STILL be no fix involved - only a one-time huge tax bill. Add to this, our elected officials lied to the voters over and over about the change of government issue, they lied to the voters about the tax increase in 2007, they held an illegal meeting to try to kill the petition that had over 3,000 voter signatures in 2004, and much much more.

    How can you claim these politicians are working FOR the town and FOR the voters when they have lied to the voters over and over and over?

    Yes, you and everyone has a right to their opinion. But I have the right to challenge those opinions whent he facts don't add up. Further, knowing that you are a Republican Party political appointee who obtained a huge boost from your political connections to spend $20,000 in a campaign that usually has candidates spending under $500, we have every right to our opinion that you have a severe conflict of interest and so will do and say anything to support your cronies, even if it's just on the critical issues as you've pointed out.

  11. Yes, Mr. van Lier, thios blog is some news, but mostly my commentary and my opinion. And I appreciate your challenges to my opinions - they are good ones. And I respect your right to post your opinions here.

    That's why these comments will not be deleted. Unlike what happened here


  12. Response to Mike B - you bet I will come across as angry whenever people fabricate claims and statements for personal or political reasons. It's worse here in Hillsborough because our elected officials have lied to the public so much it's impossible to list it all.

    You asked about me although you can go through archives of the Hillsborough Beacon and elsewhere to get that info. I was in office on Township Committee from 1994 through 1999, was Deputy Mayor in 1997 and Mayor in 1999. I served on the Planning Bd for seven years from 1993 thru 1999. I am a Republican but I am not active in either the Republican nor Democrat Party and have not been for some time.

    On the subject of Assessments - towns do NOT have to go through an expensive and time-consuming Revaluation every 5 to 10 years, or even 20 years. The choices are to annually do a percentage of the town per state law, or to only have total town Revaluation periodically.

    And you do NOT have to pay out $1 Million for a revaluation just to have someone come into your home. The annual program calls for 25% of all properties being field inspected (someone comes into your home), 50% minimum have record changes done administratively, and 80% of all records must at least be reviewed - each and every year!

    I'm not going to insult you by repeating what I've already stated. If you have any questions or wish to let us know what you think, please do so. It is an incredible insult for everyone in Hillsborough to have elected officials who would lie to them and to do so with such arrogance and total disregard for ethics and honesty. I hope and pray Mike, that you agree with this opinion.

  13. Sorry Greg, not sure what you mean about deleted posts. Can you tell us what you are referring to?

    And I must add that you have avoided answering the numerous critical points I've raised which tells us all you do not wish to debate and discuss these issues. You do not wish to explore via discussion and a back-and-forth mechanism, the ability to have us find out which is really the truth, versus that reality which is fabricated for personal or political reasons. That is sad.

    I've answered every question you raised and I've responded to every pertinent statement or claim of yours. But you do not wish to reciprocate. It seems that you do not want to iron out the facts, to help separate the wheat from the chaff so to speak?!

    How can we support your claim that our Township Committee is working to make the town better, when you refuse to provide support for such a claim? Worse than that, I provided a wealth of facts that can only lead us to believe that our own elected officials are lying to us with such regularity that the total list cannot be placed here - certainly not in a single post!

    So we'll leave it at this - that you will generally make statements and claims that are just your opinion, and that you do not wish to explore any alignment of other opinions with yours in an effort to arrive at a universally agreed upon better conclusion!

  14. Greg

    7-22-12, It and old Secret Code Game. Very simple, I'm sure you can figure it out. In fact you are involved with it in this thread. 7-22-12 is using you to push his vengeful, ridiculous wrong political facts.

    The poor guys been voted out of office, failed on Q3, Q5, eliminated from this very same C-N blog, has been cut off on the Beacon board and for all intents and proposes on the NJO board, so now he comes here (his former blog) to argue another one of his pointless points.

    Like the fires we can’t fight, the missing 31 towns, the hot tub picture, the threats of jailing people, the missing NJElec violations the 1,000 trucks a day, his “non-partisan” wards petition, his more complex-larger government will COST LESS, the csc did NOT have a pre-determined bias, his rutgers study that shows 31 towns where taxes went down, but he can't show us the study, or tell us the towns, "it's now or never," it's bad for RALG to communicate its views with voters,with privately-raised money, but okay for pro-changers to do it with public money, ralg "cherry-picked" facts, but the csc tax-paid summary mailer did not, even though the csc was requested to mail the entire report, in the 2007 board of ed election, he falsely accused certain candidates of ELEC violations, but endorsed others at the same time that had never filed their ELEC reports. He was subsequently fired by the Courier-News for exposing Gannett to libel and slander litigation, but blame it now on a disagreement over whether he would blog about the garden club. He is the only sitting elected official to ever be sued for libel and slander, but blame it on the republican campaign. His entire public life has been a lie. His only way to win (which he never will) is to sling enough mud against the tree and just hope some of it sticks.

  15. Message for 08844 - there are other places for your hate-mongering and venom. This thread happens to relate to the upcoming expensive Revaluation and whether Mr. Gillette's comments and opinions were founded upon facts or not. Your spewage seems aimless and entirely personal. Get help and spread your poison elsewhere.

  16. I am

    On the same subject matter. I’m just pointing out your MO, which is to make a mountain out of a mole hill. But here’s a question for you. If the rolling tax assessment program was working so well, why did some people in Flagtown find their taxes almost doubling over night and why did the rolling tax assessment program cause some of the most attended committee meetings by tons of people who were clearly upset by the execution and unfairness of the program.

  17. 08844 - thank you for actually staying on topic and raising a seemingly valid claim, even if it appears to be supportive of the grossly incompetent behavior of our elected officials.

    It appears you fail to grasp the pertinent points already raised in this thread. To save you and other readers some time, I will repeat these simple facts.

    The annual reassessment program works quite well all over the state. IT was working good enough with minor grumblings prior to the Flagtown Insurrection that occurred circa 2003.

    Instead of FIXING the program by altering it to remove the problem that caused the Flagtown mess, our elected officials totally killed the program, thus making it inevitable that we would have to come up with an EXTRA $1 Million to $2 Million in taxes to pay for this huge Revaluation program.

    The Republican elected officials blamed The Program instead of blaming how it was working, or not!

    So, it wasn't working here, but it is working very well in MOST other towns. So does that indicate a defective program, or just a defective localized method?

    Did the elected official even TRY to fix it? Nope - they took the politically expedient route and blamed this evil program - the same prorgam that works perfectly fine for the vast majority of NJ towns and the same program deemed HIGHLY recommended by those in charge - the State of NJ and the County Tax Assessor who enforces state law.

    Finally 08844 - I leave this last point to the readers. You make the claim that I am making a mountain out of a molehill. You decried having the taxpayers pay out less than $20,000 for the Charter Study Commission, yet you think it's OKAY for us taxpayers to have to dig into our pockets for another $2 Million when it was totally unnecessary!!!???

    THAT is no molehill! When politicians cover their butts and cost taxpayers $2 Million, that's a HUGE mountain, let alone not a tiny molehill.

  18. Okay, let’s truly Debate

    You say the rolling assessment program works well in other towns. I hate to ask you this but can you name a few? Can you, also, tell me why the State elected to shut this program down if it was working so well?

    You usage of the word “Insurrection” in the Flagtowen issue is dead on target. Our TC found itself with many and I mean many angry residents demanding something be done to make sure this problem did not occur again.

    So here is the way I see it. The actual impetuous for the Reevaluation was cast the first night hundreds of Flagtown residents packed the municipal building demanding something be done, NOT as you claim because the evil republican party shut down the program that had clearly gone astray.

    One more Point here. You complain about the cost of the reevaluation, I don’t like it either, but given where we are today (from the Flagtown revolution forward) do you have an alterative that can resolve the obvious failures of this system and set our tax ratios correctly with-out a total reevaluation? I know I sure don’t know of one, but man I wish I did!

  19. After reading the recent postings here, I have a few further comments.

    I never meant to suggest that the $1 million plus for the revaluation was a small sum, or a "small price to pay", or anything similar. It is a significant expense, and should be talked about. On the other hand, I believe that the rolling assessment program also costs some money - money that we have not spent in 4 or 5 years - so that amount can be subtracted from the cost of the revaluation.

    I still don't know if it was a mistake or not to stop the rolling assessments. I really don't know. Faced with the inequities that had built up, and the dissatisfaction, to say the least, of the Flagtown residents, I don't know what I would have done.

    Mr. van Lier, you seem to be suggesting that not only was it a mistake to stop the program, but that the program was run incorrectly, incompetently I think you said, in the years before it was halted. That is something I know nothing about and have no evidence of.

  20. The false claim was just made that the state shut down this program???!!! Without further explanation, that is totally incorrect. The annual reassessment program follows state law but is enforced at the county level. In 2004 if I recall correctly, the state revised the computer software and so changed quite a lot of information and required more data. To allow towns additional time to align with the new program, the state froze the assessments FOR ONE YEAR! That's it! They NEVER "shut down" the program.

    So, the state found a way to make the program better and did they simply scrap the whole thing - which is what our elected officials did??? No, the state FIXED the issues they found and the program was restarted in a better condition.

    By comparison, the Township Committee COULD have elected to FIX the program that caused problems in Flagtown. But no - they killed the program and worse than that! They LIED to the voters claiming The PROGRAM itself was the evil-doer!!!???

    The Republican Party even used this powerful issue in MANY campaign mailings claiming they stopped the evil Rolling Reassessment program!

    But the program isn't what's wrong! It's the way the program was being applied that was the problem.

    08844 wants to know what towns are using the state program???!!! Anyone can go to the County Tax Assessor and get details on what towns in our county are using the program and which ones aren't. Listing the 75% to 85% of all towns across the state of NJ that use the state program would be too long a list and would not be valuable.

    More valuable is asking the County Tax Assessor if it's better to stay in the annual program, or to NOT do reassessments but instead to wait for a period of years until a full and expensive Revaluation is required.

    I've asked that question so I know the answer! ALL experts in municipal assessment will tell you it's much less expensive and simpler and more equitable to stay in the state reassessment program!

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. Mr. Van Lier

    You make such broad statements. If we are going to actually debate you need to drill down a bit and use facts, not assumptions. For example: It is a FACT the rolling assessment program upset many, many Flagtown residents and that is a provable fact.

    You on the other hand say the rolling assessment program worked well in many other towns. Fine, but now you need to name at least one town and show how well it worked. See like this. I can say factually -- The rolling assessment program FAILED the residents of Flagtwon NJ, which is evident by some of their property tax bills doubling over night because of this program. Now you need to say: The rolling assessment program WORK well in (Fill in the name) NJ, which is evident by that towns tax ratios always being correct.

    Also, you say – “ ALL experts in municipal assessment will tell you it's much less expensive and simpler and more equitable to stay in the state reassessment program!” Again a very broad statement, could you name at least one “expert” by name and provide a quote of him or her saying it is much less expensive and simpler?

  23. 08844 - Please stop wasting our time by trying to cover up for your cronies in elected office in Hillsborough who are going to cost us all over $1 Million in additional taxes to pay for a Revaluation!

    Why do I have to repeat myself? I already wrote that I KNOW FOR A FACT that the vast majority of other towns use the state annual program successfully. You also ask about WHO these experts are yet I already identified them!!!

    So, you can accomplish BOTH of your objectives but YOU have to actually do some work. Stop asking ME to do YOUR work!

    I've alerady spoken with the Hillsborough Tax Assessor and the COunty Tax Assessor - on more than one occasion.

    So while you apply smoke and mirrors to throw doubt on simple facts, here is what is undeniable.

    Hillsborough used the state annual reassessment program for many years and it did not become an issue until 2003.

    Most other towns all across the state use the same program successfully.

    The Township Committee could have FIXED the program but NO, they decided to KILL the program which is why we taxpayers now have to dig deeper to pay higher taxes.