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Jackson County homeowners protest property tax increases that doubles in some cases. Photo: video.

Missouri sues Jackson County over bungled property assessments   

Jackson County homeowners who complained about high assessments this year made their voices heard, and the state of Missouri is responding. Attorney General Andrew Bailey this week filed suit alongside the state tax commission against the county for its failure to follow the law in assessing and levying property taxes.

The lawsuit alleges that Jackson County caused significant economic harm to residents when it dramatically and illegally increased property owner’s assessments, which resulted in undue taxes. Bailey’s lawsuit asserts that county officials violated state law when they failed to give timely and proper notice of assessments, failed to perform the required physical inspections of certain property and handled appeals of their property assessments in an illegal and dysfunctional manner.

“I will always fight for Missourians who are being overtaxed, especially in Joe Biden’s economy where everyone’s wallet is stretched thin,” Bailey said. “The Missouri Constitution expressly prohibits a county from illegally taxing its residents. We will stand in the gap to protect Jackson County residents and right this egregious wrong.”

The lawsuit alleges that Jackson County’s illegal actions resulted in an average assessed value increase of at least 30 percent across the board. Some Jackson County property owners reported increases in excess of 100 percent. “As a result, defendants have subjected Jackson County property owners to undue taxation based on illegally increased assessment values without the opportunity to take advantage of the statutorily provided administrative remedies,” the lawsuit said.

Bailey noted that complaints from Jackson County residents have poured into the attorney general’s office. “We’re glad Jackson County residents came forward to let us know how they were adversely affected by this illegal behavior,” he said. “We encourage all Missourians to reach out when they need help. We will always have Missourians’ backs.”

Affected Jackson County residents should pay their taxes due on December 31 under protest and then plan to pursue remedies available to them by law, according to the attorney general’s office.

–Alan Goforth | MV

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