Relationship to County Legislative Body and Other Officials-Assessor of Property

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The assessor must interact with the county mayor and/or a finance/budget director as well as the county legislative body regarding the assessor's budget and budget amendments. The exact procedures vary from county to county depending upon whether the county operates under a charter or optional general law regarding budgeting, or has a private act dealing with this subject. However, all assessors must submit budget requests in a timely manner in the first half of each calendar year for inclusion in the county's annual budget. Most counties have budget committees that may recommend appropriations for the assessor's budget that differ from that submitted by the assessor. The county legislative body determines the amount of the assessor's budget, subject to certain restrictions such as the requirement to fund a deputy for each 4500 parcels of land in the county over the first 4500 parcels.

The assessor has an important relationship with the county trustee. The assessor annually submits to the trustee the tax roll of the county, which includes the appraised and assessed valuation, including use value for "greenbelt" qualifying property; submits certification to the trustee for errors discovered in the tax rolls within specified time limits, as well as back assessments and reassessments of property; and certifies to the trustee changes in the classification of "greenbelt" property that requires the collection of rollback taxes.

The assessor also has an important relationship with the register of deeds in gathering information as each change of property ownership must be noted by the assessor as well as changes in value reflected in affidavits of value on deeds subject to the state transfer tax. Some county legislative bodies cause the offices of register and assessor to be located next to each other to facilitate the transfer of information. Other changes of ownership may be reflected in probated wills and divorce decrees; therefore, a good working relationship with the clerks of court also helps the assessor maintain up-to-date assessment rolls.

The assessor must also interact with county and state boards of equalization in determining the correct valuation of property when the taxpayer appeals the assessment.

The assessor receives assistance from the Division of Property Assessments, which has a major role in the periodic reassessment of property in the county. Certain utility property, such as that of telecommunications companies, railroad companies and pipeline companies, are centrally assessed by the Office of State Assessed Properties (OSAP), Comptroller of the Treasury. The state Board of Equalization reviews the assessments made by the comptroller and upon certification of these assessments, the comptroller certifies these valuations to the assessor and trustee of the county where the properties lie. T.C.A. §§ 67-5-1329, 67-5-1331. The assessor incorporates these central assessments into the county's tax roll.