As prescribed by General Statutes the Assessor’s Department annually files the Grand List, which is the valuation and assessment of real property, business personal property, and motor vehicles for municipal taxation purposes.
In addition to the filing of the Grand List, it is the responsibility of the department to administer all programs mandated under State Law, State and Local benefits for veteran’s, totally disabled, the blind, and elderly homeowners and renters.
Programs and Exemptions
Programs and exemptions available through the Shelton Assessor’s office
Elderly and Totally Disabled Homeowners Program
State and local programs are available to homeowners who are 65 years of age and homeowners, regardless of age, who are totally disabled. The program grants credit against tax payments.
Income limits for the program are set annually by the Office of Policy and Management. Income includes wages, pension, Social Security payments, and interest on savings.
Applications are accepted in the Assessor’s Office from February 1st to May 15th.
Elderly Homeowners Freeze Program
In October 2007 the Board of Alderman approved by municipal ordinance an Elderly Homeowners Freeze program. To be eligible one must be 70 years of age. The income limits for the Local Freeze Program are the same as the income limits for the State and Local Homeowners and Totally disabled Programs. If one meets the guidelines, the taxes are frozen. The Local Elderly Freeze Program is in addition to the State and Local Elderly Homeowners Program. Applications are accepted between February 1st and May 15th each year.
Elderly and Totally Disabled Renters Program
Partial refund of rent and utility bills, by a check from the state, is available to renters who are 65 years old, and to renters (no age requirement), who are totally disabled.
Income limits for the program are set annually by the Office of Policy and Management.
Applications are taken at the Shelton Senior Center, 81 Wheeler St, from April 1st to October 1st.
Veterans who served in the Armed Forces of the U.S. during wartime, or who have a disability rating from the Veterans’ Administration, and have filed their honorable discharge papers in the Shelton City/Town Clerk’s Office, may qualify for a veteran exemption off the assessment of their property. The filing deadline for discharge papers is September 30th.
There are different programs that a veteran may be eligible for, and the filing period for the applications with the Assessor’s Office is from February 1st to October 1st.
A person who is legally blind, and has provided to the Assessor’s Office a certificate from a qualified medical practitioner to the fact, can receive a state exemption on property. An additional local exemption (income qualifying) may also apply.
Totally Disabled Exemption
An exemption on property can be granted to an individual who receives permanent full disability benefits under Social Security, or under any federal, state, or local government retirement or disability plan. The person must present, to the Assessor’s Office, a certificate of disability, from the agency that grants the benefits. An additional local exemption (income qualifying) may also apply.
Frequently Asked Questions
State statutes provide exemptions for veterans, the blind, and totally disabled. If you now have an exemption, it will be automatically deducted at tax billing time. For those who do not have one, but feel that they could qualify for an exemption, make inquiry at the Assessor’s Office.
Those elderly on the Homeowners Program will not lose their benefits at revaluation, as long as they meet the requirements of the program and maintain the biennial filing. For information on how to get on the Homeowners Program, one can call the Assessor’s Office.
Yes, definitely. Section 12-118 requires payment of at least 75% of taxes due, or 90% if the assessment exceeds $500,000, even if appealed. Otherwise, penalties and interest are added to unpaid taxes due. Any judgment in your favor requires a refund of taxes paid in excess of any reduced assessment.
No. In fact, the Assessor’s Office encourages you to review your assessments and appeal IF you sincerely question the value. The Assessor’s Office will see that each taxpayer is satisfied within the limits set by state statute, and at the same time assure that assessments are on a fair share basis. In the great majority of cases, when the Assessor finds that the taxpayer is right, an adjustment is made immediately. The Assessor would like to satisfy each property owner, but has a duty to all taxpayers in the city to be fair and equitable, and work within the guidelines of Connecticut State Statutes.
The next step is a formal hearing before the Board of Assessment Appeals. Please contact the Assessor’s Office at 203-924-1555, Ext. 1364 for further instructions. Or, you may complete the Application To Petition and return it to the Assessor’s Office. You will receive a date and time to appear before the Board of Assessment Appeals.Application-To-Petition.pdf (190 downloads)
Any evidence that you may have affecting your assessment should be presented to the Board of Assessment Appeals. Should a disagreement remain after the Board of Assessment Appeals hearing, an appeal to the courts under Section 12-118 of the Connecticut State Statutes is the next and last step.
The Assessor and staff arrive at the assessed value. If you believe that your assessment is wrong, the first step is to contact the Assessor’s Office. Questions and discussion can be clarified through a telephone call. A meeting or informal hearing might be necessary. If so, you will be given an appointed time to come into the Assessor’s Office. This is the proper time and place to correct any errors and miscalculations.
A member of the Assessor’s staff will review your property records, and necessary adjustments will be made if you show that an error has been made in describing your property, which significantly affects its value.
If there is a significant difference between the data on your property records and the state of your property, the Assessor’s Office will schedule an inspection and review of your property. In some cases, where the person appealing presents factual evidence, an adjustment can be made without additional inspection and review.
It is the Law. The State of Connecticut, under the provisions of Section 12-62 of the General Statutes, requires a revaluation of all real estate every five years. Legislation mandates that Shelton conducts a revaluation for the October 1, 2016 Grand List. There is a growing awareness that the local property taxes have become a significant part of the expenses in owning property. Keeping this in mind, revaluations are required to insure property owners of uniformity in property valuations. A revaluation sets new assessed values on a current basis, for use by the Assessor.
A successful revaluation requires a significant amount of time spent on careful research to assure that the new values are accurate and that all property owners will pay ONLY their FAIR SHARE of the property tax burden.
Until a total Grand List, including all new values, is completed, and a new budget is adopted, no one can say what the mill rate or your tax bill will be.
A fact to consider, however, is that with the downward or upward adjustment of the mill rate at revaluation, the tax bill on motor vehicles could increase or decrease. Remember since the 2011 revaluation the real estate assessments have been 70% of 2011 market value, and have remained that way for the past five years until the 2016 revaluation. But this is not the case for motor vehicles. A motor vehicle is annually assessed at 70% of current average retail value. When the mill rate is reduced, one will pay less in Shelton on motor vehicles. When the mill rate increases, one will pay more.
In other words, consider the total municipal tax bill – real estate and motor vehicles – and then look at the impact of revaluation.
Except where otherwise determined by law, mill rates are established by dividing the budget to be raised by local taxes by the total taxable assessments in the city.
The primary purpose of revaluation notices is to show the assessment determined so that you can have the opportunity to review and insure that no errors have been made. Questions of value can be reviewed, explained, and justified. Adjustments, corrections, and concerns will be noted.
Remember, a revaluation establishes and addresses value, not taxes. Revaluations are important because the amount of municipal taxes is based on the assessed value of property – Formula: Assessment x Mill Rate = Taxes.
The new assessments will be placed on the October 1, 2016 Grand List from which tax bills will be generated and due on July 1, 2017.