The Florida Department of Revenue recently issued Property Tax Oversight Bulletin 09-29, which clarifies the order of presentation of evidence and other procedural issues that have arisen in the 2009 Value Adjustment Board hearings. Among other things, the bulletin explains that:
- The first issue to be considered at the VAB hearing is whether the Property Appraiser’s assessment will be presumed correct.
- In determining whether the Property Appraiser’s assessment is presumed correct, the Property Appraiser should be required to present their evidence first.
- Evidence regarding the general appraisal practices of the Property Appraiser’s office or approval of the tax roll by the Department of Revenue is insufficient to establish the presumption. The Property Appraiser must explain how those practices were applied to the specific property at issue.
- If the Property Appraiser does not present evidence on this issue, or if the presumption is otherwise lost, the VAB may establish the value or remand to the Property Appraiser for a reassessment.
- Regardless of whether the Property Appraiser retains the presumption of correctness, the taxpayer still has the right to a determination of the appropriateness of the Property Appraiser’s appraisal methodology.