Township committee approved a contract for $194,000 Monday with Delran-based Professional Property Appraisers (PPA), who could begin the process of reassessing Cinnaminson as early as the beginning of May.
Committee unanimously OKed the contract after the township has seen revenues slip away dramatically the last few years due to lost tax appeals. According to tax assessor Dennis DeKlerk, the township lost more than $1.6 million in tax revenue through appeals from 2010 to 2012, with 2011 ($695,000) and 2012 ($660,000) representing the "high water mark."
Cinnaminson isn't alone. Several communities in Burlington County have undergone reassessments in the last few years—since the housing market tanked—most notably the township's neighbor, Moorestown, which just had its reassessment completed by Appraisal Systems Inc. (ASI).
ASI was the only other firm to submit a proposal for Cinnaminson's reassessment.
As with Moorestown, the reassessment that will be done by PPA here will be less intensive than the revaluation conducted in 2007, DeKlerk said. The firm won't actually be entering homes unless the property has changed since the previous revaluation.
According to DeKlerk, the township's ratable base is currently $1.9 billion, with residential properties accounting for roughly $1.6 billion. The results of Moorestown's reassessment showed its ratable base ($4.7 billion in 2008) dropped by more than $800,000,000 over the last five years.
DeKlerk said the township also has the ability to prevent further instability in the tax base if it chooses to reinspect 20 percent of the properties each year, over a five-year period.
"Committee would have to authorize it for it to even be considered," he said.
Mayor Ben Young said PPA's bid came in well below what the township had budgeted for the reassessment, $250,000. Solicitor John Gillespie previously stated the township would be able to spread the cost over five years.
DeKlerk anticipates PPA's appraisers will hit the ground within the next couple of months. The new values would take effect in 2014.