MISSION, KS (KCTV) -- Jackson County homeowners have more time to appeal their property taxes if they feel they are wrong.
That decision was made Tuesday morning, and it comes after intense pressure from African American and Hispanic leaders.
Homeowners now have until Sept. 3 to appeal and prove that assessments are wrong. A record number of people have done so, and some expect more than 40,000 people will appeal because the assessment is so fundamentally flawed.
Even though more time has been granted for homeowners to fight they you feel their value is wrong, community leaders are still very clear that this is not enough and want a plan to overhaul the assessment.
"There needs to be a current freeze of the valuation process right now because there are disparities based upon race and based upon geography in Kansas City. There still exists systemic racism and geographic disparities in the assessments which have been done,” said Vernon Howard who wants to overall the plan.
It shows how much of the county was granted a perfect 14.9% increase and then people who live in the city were tagged much harder. This has really concerned community and political leaders who say they will continue to fight this assessment because it is clear some groups were hit much harder.
“Ultimately, our goal is to stop this assessment plan. This assessment plan is not fair. It's unequal and it's racist,” said Charlie Lona who lives in the Westside neighborhood.
The assessor recently admitted this specific increase that 28% of homeowners got was because she ran out of time. She did think this was a fair value.
Homeowners are hoping caps will be put into place.
This is the plan that Preston smith from Blue Springs has suggested. However, it's still under consideration and unclear what will happen next.
Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. issued the following statement after the Board of Equalization’s decision to extend the formal appeal deadline:
“The County understands the Board of Equalization’s decision to extend the formal appeal deadline. We will continue to work with the Board through this process to ensure that all property owners are heard. Under the leadership of Gail McCann Beatty, our assessment department diligently continues its efforts to process informal reviews and will recommend any adjustments to property values, where appropriate, to ensure accuracy, fairness and equity.
Additionally, it is important to note that property owners are not appealing their tax bill. The process gives property owners the right to file an appeal to dispute their fair market value as determined by the assessment department, not their tax bill. Tax bills are not final and furthermore, the assessor is not a tax collector, does not set the tax rate and does not determine the amount of taxes a property owner pays. Again, the assessor’s job is to determine fair market value and make sure every property tax dollar is assessed equally so property owners are not paying more than their fair share. As this reassessment process moves forward, fulfilling that state-mandated duty remains our priority.”