Property Valuation Division, Directive
Annual Appraisal:10%Variance Language in KSA 79-503a
Annual Appraisal: "10% Variance" Language in K.S.A. 79-503a
This directive is adopted pursuant to the provisions of L. 1992, ch. 249, § 1, and shall be in force and effect from and after the Director's approval date.
The county appraiser shall have the duty of reappraising all real property in the county and of updating the same on an annual basis. This means that reappraisal is an ongoing process and that every parcel of real property must be appraised annually. The county appraiser is required by law to value property at its fair market value or use value, whichever is applicable, pursuant to K.S.A. 79-501, 79-503a, and 79-1439. K.S.A. 79-503a provides in pertinent part as follows:
"A variance of 10% in any individual appraisal at fair market value shall not be considered willful neglect of the county appraiser's duty to achieve fair market value.
The foregoing provision shall not be construed to mean that a series of such variances does not constitute willful neglect. . . .
" (emphasis added).
The language of K.S.A. 79-503a regarding 10% variance
authorize the board of county commissioners or the county appraiser to establish variance or threshold levels when determining property values. Such a practice would constitute "a series of variances" and would be considered willful neglect which is prohibited by K.S.A. 79-503a. It is the appraiser's duty to find the fair market value, or use value, of each property on an annual basis. It is improper for the appraiser to roll over a value from the previous year simply to avoid notifying the taxpayer of a change in value. It is the position of the Division of Property Valuation that such a practice would be in violation of K.S.A. 79-503a.
This is not to say that an appraiser is prohibited from carrying forward a value if, in the appraiser's judgment, the value established in the prior year is the appropriate value for the current year. However, if a value is carried forward, the appraiser must be prepared to document that such value is the fair market value, or use value, of the property.
Approved: November 3, 1992
David C. Cunningham
Director of Property Valuation
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