Missouri AG and State Auditor Challenge Unlawful Property Tax Assessments Impacting Hundreds of Thousands – Involving Blackrock-Owned Firm

Two Missouri state officials are on a mission to help thousands of residents of Jackson County who have become the victims of skyrocketing property tax assessments. Attorney General Andrew Bailey and State Auditor Scott Fitzpatrick are working to provide relief to the beleaguered homeowners.

For the 2023 property tax year, property owners in Kansas City and Jackson County were hit with unprecedented increases in property tax assessments. Many homeowners saw their assessments increase by 30% or more, while others experienced jumps of 100% or higher. Adding insult to injury, the assessment notices were sent out late, leaving homeowners with limited time to file an appeal.

Property owners were left with no recourse, as the local officials in Jackson County, including the County Director of Assessment and the County Executive, failed to take action to address the situation. Recognizing the need for intervention, Attorney General Bailey and State Auditor Fitzpatrick stepped in to help resolve the crisis.

On December 19, 2023, Attorney General Bailey filed a legal action against the Jackson County Executive Director, the Director of Assessment, the County Legislature, the Board of Equalization, and Tyler Technologies, Inc., over the unlawful 2023 property assessments. Bailey cited failures in providing proper notice, inspections, and coercion of property owners to drop their appeals, leading to violations of property owners’ rights and unjust taxation.

The State Auditor also addressed the situation, concluding that the Jackson County Assessor failed to provide property owners with accurate and timely notification of their rights, rendering many property assessments likely invalid. Both the Attorney General and the State Auditor’s interventions were a result of the advocacy of property owners and real estate professionals who pushed for relief for Jackson County homeowners.

Elected officials such as State Representative Chris Sander and 6th District Legislator Sean Smith, along with other real estate professionals, volunteered their time and expertise to bring attention to the assessment debacle. These individuals worked tirelessly to advocate for homeowners, arrange meetings, and offer guidance on the appeals process, all with the aim of reaching a resolution.

Real estate professional Stacey Johnson-Cosby, and experts like Marlene Jeffers and Toni Viens, also played crucial roles by providing guidance, holding workshops, and sharing expertise on property valuation and assessment technology. The collaborative efforts of these individuals and state officials highlight a concerted effort to protect the rights of property owners and ensure fair property assessments for Jackson County residents.

These combined efforts ultimately resulted in the Missouri Attorney General and State Auditor getting involved to root out any improprieties in the property assessments in Jackson County and pave the way for relief for the thousands of homeowners impacted. As a result, new legislation and solutions are being explored to prevent similar problems from occurring in the future.

The involvement of Attorney General Bailey and State Auditor Fitzpatrick sent a powerful message – elected officials who care can make a difference and bring about positive change. The residents of Jackson County are no longer alone in their fight for fair and just property assessments, thanks to the efforts of these two dedicated officials and the support of local advocacy groups and real estate professionals.


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