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PDFWAC 458-14-046

Regularly convened sessionBoard dutiesPresumption.

(1) Introduction. This rule explains the process described in RCW 84.48.010, requiring the boards of equalization (board) to meet annually for its regularly convened session.
(2) Other rules to reference. Readers may want to refer to other rules for additional information, including:
(a) WAC 458-14-015 Jurisdiction of county boards of equalization.
(b) WAC 458-14-025 Assessment roll adjustments not requiring board action.
(c) WAC 458-14-026 Assessment roll corrections agreed to by taxpayer.
(d) WAC 458-14-076 Hearings on petitionsWithdrawal.
(3) Definitions. The definitions found in WAC 458-14-005 apply to this rule.
(4) Examples. This rule includes examples that identify a set of facts and then state a conclusion. These examples should only be used as a general guide. The department will evaluate each case on its particular facts and circumstances.
(5) Regularly convened session.
(a) The board must meet in open session for the purpose of equalizing property values in the county and to hear taxpayer appeals. The board must meet annually, on the later of:
(i) July 15th;
(ii) The first business day following July 15th when it occurs on a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday; or
(iii) Within fourteen days of the assessor certifying the county assessment roll to the board.
(b) The board must meet for a minimum of three days during their regular convened twenty-eight day session.
(c) With the approval of the county legislative authority, the board may convene at any time if the number of taxpayer petitions filed exceeds twenty-five, or ten percent of the number of petitions filed in the preceding year, whichever is greater.
(d) The board has the authority, on its own initiative, to equalize property values during its regularly convened session.
(e) At its regularly convened session, the board must adjust the current assessment year's value of property, both real and personal, to its true and fair value, but only if the board finds that the assessed value is not correct based upon:
(i) Information available to the board and/or the board's own examination and comparison of the assessment roll; or
(ii) A request by the assessor, together with necessary valuation information, for correction of an error which correction requires appraisal judgment.
(f) The board must hold hearings on properly and timely filed taxpayer petitions.
(g) The board must consider any taxpayer appeals from an assessor's decision with respect to a tax exemption of real or personal property, and determine:
(i) If the taxpayer is entitled to the tax exemption; and
(ii) If so, the amount of the tax exemption.
(h) At the conclusion of a board's regularly convened session, it must provide the department with its adjournment date. The adjournment date assists the department in determining whether a board is eligible to reconvene.
(6) Presumption of correctness. The assessor's valuation as certified to the board of equalization under RCW 84.40.320 is presumed correct, except with respect to subsection (5)(e)(ii) of this rule. The taxpayer may overcome the presumption of correctness in favor of the assessor's valuation as follows:
(a) If a taxpayer shows by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence that the assessor's overall approach to valuation, or the assessor's valuation method, is flawed or invalid, then the presumption of correctness does not apply. For example, the taxpayer may be able to prove that the assessor failed to deduct any amount for depreciation when using the cost approach to value on an existing improvement. In such a case, the taxpayer only needs to prove the correct value of the property by a preponderance of the evidence.
(b) If a taxpayer shows by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence that a specific value within an overall assessed value is incorrect, then the standard of proof shifts to a preponderance of the evidence for all contested issues related to that specific value. For example, the overall assessment of complex industrial properties is often made up of particular values for portions of the property being appraised. An assessor's error on one value decision does not necessarily invalidate the entire property's assessment, and the presumption of correctness in favor of the assessor remains with respect to the remainder of the property.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 84.08.010, 84.08.070, 84.36.389, 84.52.0502, and 84.55.060. WSR 18-04-006, § 458-14-046, filed 1/25/18, effective 2/25/18. Statutory Authority: RCW 84.08.010, 84.08.070, and 84.48.200. WSR 06-13-034, § 458-14-046, filed 6/14/06, effective 7/15/06; WSR 90-23-097, § 458-14-046, filed 11/21/90, effective 12/22/90.]
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