Like many others in Cornelius, particularly those who live on or near the lake, Cameron filed an appeal on his 2011 revaluation with the county, and he did receive an adjustment: an increase of $16,000 in property value. In his posting, Cameron asked if anyone had experienced an increase in their assessed value as a result of an appeal, and as of Wednesday morning, no one had expressed a similar experience.
Cameron's lot is smaller than others around him and is farther back into the cove than several real estate industry-recognized comparables, which are some 30 to 35 percent lower in assessed value than his house. One reason cited for his higher assessment: a "more prestigious" view. Similar to other complaints about the county assessor's office, it appears values are being assigned to lots and homes based on opinion, not hard data.
Cameron has an attorney and is taking his appeal to Raleigh, so those asking for more information from him on the Flawed Revaluation page aren't likely to get it for now. He promised Talkers that when the time is right, he'll go on the record and talk about his experience.
WBTV has aired several stories questioning the revaluation process, so it leaves Talkers to question — in more than slightly cynical fashion — whose side Mecklenburg County officials are really on.
We stand corrected
Talkers consider themselves observers and conveyors of the news and not part of the news, so they admit to getting somewhat embarrassed when they are called out in public and complimented on something they wrote that had some kind of positive impact.
They like it even less, understandably, when they are recognized during a government meeting for an error. Such was the case Monday night when Cornelius Commissioner Dave Gilroy, trying to make a point about an uninformed — or misinformed — electorate not participating in the town's budget process, cited a headline above a Talker's story that suggested a town manager-recommended 24 cents per $100 valuation property tax rate for the town achieves revenue neutrality in the wake of the most recent county revaluation.
Gilroy, in his customary confrontational fashion, directly engaged the Talker in question from the dais before a "crowd" that consisted of three other reporters, a handful of town staff and one Cornelius resident. While Talkers are none-too-happy about becoming part of the meeting minutes from the mouth of an elected official, they are always pleased to poke other media in the eye over erroneous reporting, so fair is fair. A revenue neutral tax rate in Cornelius is estimated at 23 cents per $100, not 24 cents. Since a penny is worth $480,000 to the town coffers, that's no small change.