Assessing & GIS (Geographic Information System)

The City Assessor is responsible for listing and keeping the records for all real and personal property in the City of Lapeer.  Real property is generally land and all things attached to it.  Personal property includes machinery and equipment and is generally claimed by commercial and industrial businesses.  The City Assessor is an administrative officer of the City and is appointed by the City Manager with approval of the City Commission.

Every year the Assessor is required by state law to individually place an assessment equal to fifty percent of true cash value on all property in the jurisdiction.  An assessment roll is created from these assessments and is one of the factors in determining the property tax bill.  In 1994 Proposal A was passed which says taxes will be based on taxable value.  Taxable value is the lower of the State Equalized Value (SEV) or the Cap Value (simplified, the cap value is based on the cost of living increase).  The local taxing jurisdictions determine the millage rates that determine the total amount of taxes to be collected.  The local taxing jurisdictions are the City of Lapeer, Lapeer County, the Lapeer Community School District and the Lapeer Intermediate School District.

The State Tax Commission provides assessors with manuals and guidelines to follow to help maintain uniformity and equality in the assessments.  Sales studies are also prepared annually to help estimate values.

With the exception of a few records (personal property statements and real property confidential forms) all records in the Assessor's office are available for review by the Public.  These records would include the property parcel cards, legal descriptions, sales study data, lot and building sizes, plat maps, and the State Tax Commission manuals.   According to the City Charter, the assessment rolls must be completed by the first Monday in March and be available for review by the taxpayers.  After receiving their change of assessment notices in February, an informal review with the Assessor may be requested by the taxpayer prior to the more formal review conducted by the Board of Review at their March meetings.  The Board of Review is made up of City of Lapeer citizens appointed by the Mayor and City Commission to review the assessment rolls.  The Assessor serves as secretary to the Board of Review.

The Assessor is also charged with the responsibility of maintaining and updating the City's GIS (Geographic Information System).