Topic:
FORESTS; PROPERTY TAX; MUNICIPALITIES; STATISTICAL INFORMATION; AGRICULTURE (GENERAL); LAND USE;
Location:
ASSESSMENT; OPEN SPACE;

OLR Research Report


February 8, 2006

 

2006-R-0059

ASSESSING THE VALUE OF 490 LAND

By: John Rappa, Principal Analyst

You asked how many towns do not use the values the state recommends for assessing farms, forests, and open spaces under the Public Act 490 Program.

At least 18 towns do not use the recommended values for assessing “490 land” (i.e., farms, forests, and open spaces). These towns represent 22% of the 83 towns that responded to an online survey the Connecticut Association of Assessing Officers (CAAO) conducted on our behalf between January 10th and 27th. The respondents represent 49% of the state's towns and 47.9 of its land area. Table 1 lists the towns and their responses.

CAAO conducted the survey over its list server, which is connected to assessors in at least 138 towns. The survey question asked assessors to indicate if they used the recommended values and, if they did not, list the ones they used.

The law requires assessors to determine the value of 490 land based solely on how it is being used (i.e., current use value) without regard to its potential resale or fair market value (i.e., the highest and best use one can make of undeveloped land). The law does not specify how assessors must determine current use values or prescribe them, but the Department of Agriculture issues recommended values every five years. Attachment 1 lists the values for 2005, but, as Table 1 shows, almost half the respondent towns still use the 2000 values.

Table 1: Values Used by Selected Towns for Assessing 490 Land

Town

Area

(Square Miles)

Uses Recommended Values

Uses other Values

2000 Values

2005 Values

Avon

23.5

   

X

Berlin

27.0

   

X

Bethlehem

19.4

X

   

Bloomfield

26.2

X

Will use 2005 values for 2009 reval.

 

Bolton

14.7

X

   

Bristol

26.8

X

Will use 2005 values for 2007 reval.

 

Brooklyn

29.0

 

X

 

Burlington

30.4

 

X

 

Canterbury

40.2

 

X

 

Canton

25.0

   

X

Cheshire

33.4

   

X

Chester

16.8

   

X

Clinton

19.0

   

X

Coventry

38.4

Used these values for the 2004 reval.

   

Cromwell

12.9

X

Will use 2005 values for 2007 reval.

 

Deep River

14.2

 

X

 

Durham

23.8

 

X

 

East Granby

17.6

X

   

East Hartford

18.8

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

East Lyme*

42.0

X

   

East Windsor

26.8

X

Will use 2005 values for 2007 reval.

 

Easton

28.6

 

X

 

Enfield

34.2

X

   

Essex

11.8

X

   

Fairfield

31.1

 

X

 

Farmington

28.8

   

X

Glastonbury

52.3

X

 

X

Goshen

45.2

X

   

Granby

40.8

X

   

Greenwich

47.8

   

X

Griswold

37.1

X

   

Groton

45.2

X

   

Guilford

49.7

 

X

 

Haddam

46.4

   

X

Hamden

33.3

 

X

 

Hebron

37.3

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

Killingly

50.0

 

X

 

Lebanon

55.2

X

   

Litchfield

56.8

X

   

Manchester

27.7

 

X

 

Middlebury

17.8

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

Table 1: Continued

Town

Area

(Square Miles)

Uses Recommended Values

Uses other Values

2000 Values

2005 Values

Middlebury

17.8

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

Middlefield

12.7

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

Middletown

40.9

X

   

Milford

26.2

   

X

Monroe

26.3

 

X

 

New Britain *

13.4

X

 

X

New Hartford

38.1

 

X

 

New Milford

63.7

 

X

 

Newington

13.2

 

X

 

Newtown

59.1

X

Will use 2005 values for 2006 reval.

 

Norfolk

46.4

 

X

 

North Branford

26.7

 

X

 

North Stonington

54.3

 

X

 

Norwich

29.5

   

X

Preston

31.8

X

   

Putnam

20.4

X

   

Ridgefield

34.4

   

X

Salem

29.8

X

   

Salisbury

57.3

   

X

Shelton

31.9

X

   

Simsbury

34.3

 

X

X

Somers

28.3

X

   

South Windsor

28.7

X

   

Southbury

40.0

X

   

Southington

36.6

   

X

Sprague

13.8

 

X

 

Stafford

58.8

 

X

 

Torrington

39.8

X

   

Union

29.8

 

X

 

Vernon

17.7

   

X

Voluntown

38.9

X

   

Washington

38.2

X

   

Watertown

29.6

X

   

West Hartford

22.4

 

X

 

West Haven

11.0

 

X

 

Wethersfield

13.1

X

   

Willington

33.5

 

X

 

Windham

27.9

 

X

 

Windsor

31.1

X

Will use 2005 values for next reval.

 

Woodbridge

19.2

 

X

 

Woodbury

36.7

X

   

Woodstock

61.8

X

   

*New Britain uses the recommended values for farmland and other values for orchards

JR:dw