The Strong Towns Podcast

“Bias Writ Large” in the Property Tax Assessment System

August 8, 2022

Fair property tax systems are crucial to developing a financially strong community, as property taxes represent a large source of public revenue for most local governments.

In today’s episode of the Strong Towns Podcast, Chuck Marohn talks with Joe Minicozzi from Urban3 about Buncombe County and the property tax inequities within Western North Carolina that are currently being investigated by the Just Accounting For Health (JAfH) consortium. 

A few months ago, Minicozzi presented some compelling disparities in the data on the assessment process to the Buncombe County Ad Hoc Reappraisal Committee—only for his presentation to be cut short by defensive audience members. In this podcast, Minicozzi shares that data he presented to the Ad Hoc Committee and talks about the historical practice of redlining, and how it has contributed to our current, broken property tax system. 

JAfH is a consortium partnered with Urban3, Strong Towns, the University of North Carolina-Asheville, and the Racial Justice Coalition. The team has been rigorously researching property tax inequities specifically in relation to Western North Carolina, as well as exploring implications of this system across the nation. Along with exposing the arbitrary data within the opaque property tax system, JAfH is answering the question, “How do systemic biases in local property tax policies and practices influence health equity in Western North Carolina?”

In this podcast, Minicozzi shows Marohn some slides from his original presentation to the Ad Hoc Committee. To view the slides, check out the accompanying video to this podcast on YouTube.

Additional Show Notes

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