Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced an initiative that will allow communities across the state to phase-in revaluations of property for a period of up to five years, even if the value of property decreases. Under current law, municipalities can only phase-in increases in assessments. This new initiative allows towns and cities to "responsibly administer revaluations in a way that blunts the negative impact to residents," said Governor Malloy. Part of today's special legislative session, this initiative will be an additional tool to help municipalities deal with dramatic decreases in property values and the negative impact those changes can have on individual taxpayers, such as those that have been observed during the course of the recent recession.
"This initiative does two things: it helps local taxpayers and allows municipalities the flexibility they need to blunt the negative impact revaluation sometimes carries," said the Governor. "While we have seen improvement in our overall economy, we must continually look for ways to mitigate the impact of the recession on Connecticut residents. We know that there are properties in our state that have not yet rebounded from the collapse of the real estate market. As a former Mayor, I am well aware of the havoc this situation can create for local governments. After today, we'll have a fair and reliable process in place that will let local executives navigate these difficult circumstances."
Earlier this month Governor Malloy vetoed legislation that would have allowed towns to delay conducting the revaluation. In his veto message, the Governor expressed concern over delaying revaluation, saying that doing so could exacerbate a municipality's financial problems. This legislation requires revaluations to go forward as statutes require, but phases-in the impact on property taxpayers.
"The Governor's proposal to broaden municipal authority to phase-in the impacts of property revaluations is good news for towns and cities. It would provide communities where property values (grand lists) have fallen an additional local-option tool to stabilize municipal finances and protect property taxpayers," said Jim Finley, Executive Director and CEO of the CT Conference of Municipalities (CCM).
"As a former Mayor, Governor Malloy understands the challenges that municipalities face, especially during these tough economic times," said Tim O'Brien, Mayor of New Britain. "This important tool will help cities and towns protect local tax payers."
"I support local municipalities having options on how they implement revaluation data," said Ryan Bingham, Mayor of Torrington. "In these difficult times, it's important that towns and cities have tools made available to lessen the impact of revaluations on their citizens and businesses. Having this option can give towns and cities a choice."