Mecklenburg County Commissioners voted unanimously on Tuesday to have Pearson’s Appraisal Service review the 2011 revaluation for $254,400. The Wilson, N.C.-based firm has a 16-week timetable to complete the review.
Mecklenburg County last month sought proposals from firms to conduct an outside investigation into whether the county’s 2011 property revaluation was fair and complied with N.C. law.
The money for the firm was budgeted for the current fiscal year, said County Manager Harry Jones. Jones said the $254,400 was for the scope of work presented to the firm. Anything beyond that would cost the county $600 per day.
Commissioner Jennifer Roberts said she at first experienced “sticker shock” when she saw the price of the review, but added that it was a “comprehensive review” that includes meetings with public input, analysis of land sales and recommendations for future revaluations.
Commissioners last month voted to ask an independent reviewer to:
• Identify areas of non-compliance with state law.
• Develop corrective measures to address any areas of non-compliance.
• Recommend how the county or state law could be amended to eliminate or reduce discrepancies between fair market and tax-assessed valuations in future reappraisals.
The decision by commissioners to have an outside review of the revaluation came after months of growing unhappiness over the job by Tax Assessor Garrett Alexander’s office in 2011to update tax values for 355,307 Mecklenburg parcels.
What began as a small-scale protest from property owners in the Cornelius/Lake Norman area spread through the county, including residents in Charlotte’s Myers Park neighborhood, with many homeowners arguing that their reappraisals were over-valued and that the process could be illegal because it doesn’t follow state law.
Charlotte Knights update
Mecklenburg commissioners received an update on how the Charlotte Knights plan to pay for a new minor-league baseball stadium in Third Ward.
The team faced a June 30 county deadline to submit a financing plan or risk losing $28 million in county land and subsidies. The team submitted a package Friday that included a letter from lenders committing to loan the team $45 million, County General Manager Bobbie Shields has said.
The county commissioners did not have to take any actions on the plan Tuesday, Shields said.
Shields told commissioners Tuesday that the next step for the Knights is to close on their financing by Sept. 30 to meet an Oct. 1 deadline to begin construction.
The baseball team also provided an update on their feasibility study – including a spreadsheet that showed the attendance comparison from teams moving from an older to a newer facility and those that have relocated from one market to the next.
“They have committed to play ball as long as they have a minimum attendance of 430,000,” Shields said. “They should be able to exceed those attendance figures.”
The planned stadium is slated to be built on county-owned land between South Graham, West Fourth and South Mint streets and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.
Read more about what was submitted at http://bit.ly/N8eJTx
The Knights currently play in Fort Mill, but have discussed a stadium in uptown Charlotte for years. The team originally was supposed to have the stadium nearly complete by last fall, but lawsuits, a weak economy and other factors stalled the project.