Property taxes rose, values soared in Eagle County
Vail, CO Colorado
EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado ” Residents angry with their increased property tax this year say they want to find out how they can make sure their bills will go down in the future.
More than 100 people attended a meeting of the Eagle County Tax Payers for Common Sense at the end of January. Residents demanded explanations from several taxing authorities who attended, including County Commissioner Peter Runyon and representatives from the school district.
Property taxes went up significantly this year because assessed values of homes increased an average of 40 percent. Many taxing authorities chose not to lower their tax rates, resulting in higher bills for many residents.
A similar meeting is planned for Feb. 25. All taxing authorities are invited to attend, and the group wants to talk about possible solutions, whether that be lower rates next year or tax rebates this year.
“I think many people really don’t understand how it works. The point of these meetings is to learn more and what we can do about it, if anything,” said Edwards resident Mary Jo Froberg, who attended the first meeting.
Edwards resident Chuck Taylor, one of the group’s leaders, said he is working on bringing in experts from Denver to talk about what can be done.
Taylor would not say what experts specifically, but he said they are people who can explain the consequences of when and how taxing authorities have the right to keep taxes rates the same, regardless of changes in home values.
Edwards resident Bill Downs has already seen results from the first meeting. After he talked to the group about how his property taxes have gone up from about $3,800 to more than $9,000 since 2004, the Eagle County assessor offered to take another look at the assessed value of his home.
“I just hope that things work out,” said Downs, a plumbing contractor. “Everything’s going up around here, and I just can’t afford it. They’re forcing us out.”
Staff Writer Melanie Wong can be reached at 748-2928, or firstname.lastname@example.org.