Property Valuation Administrator (PVA) replaced the old title of “County Tax Commissioner”, or what most people call the Tax Assessor.
The PVA office is required to administrate “ad valorem” taxes. Ad valorem is Latin for “according to value” which bases taxes on the value of the property. The Kentucky Constitution describes property tax as a tax on wealth rather than a tax on the individual.
Section 172 of the Kentucky Constitution requires the PVA to assess all property at 100% Fair Cash Value, as of the assessment date January 1st, unless specifically exempted. Fair Cash Value, or fair market value, is defined as the price a property would bring at a fair and voluntary sale between a willing buyer and a willing seller, with neither party under duress, given a reasonable amount of time on the market. The PVA does not set market value. Our task is to find, list and assess all real and personal property and to insure that assessments of unsold properties follow the market determined by buyers and sellers. Kentucky law provides for direct supervision of all PVA’s by the Finance and Administration Cabinet (FAC). Each year the FAC must perform studies on PVA’s in each county to determine if constitutional and statutory requirements have been met.
The PVA’s tax roll must meet required assessment levels and adhere to required standards of equity before a PVA’s tax roll is accepted which must be done before tax rates may be set and tax bills can be printed and collected.
Other responsibilities include listing and assessing all tangible personal property as of January 1 of each year. Tangible returns must be filed annually by May 15th. Returns received postmarked after May 15th are omitted and forwarded to the FAC, Department of Property Valuation for billing. A statutory penalty of 10% for voluntary listings and 20% for involuntary listings is applied.
The FAC provides standardized values for all automobiles, recreational vehicles, and watercraft, etc. for property tax purposes.
The creation or correction of a motor vehicle tax record is the responsibility of the PVA according to KRS 132.487(5). These activities include the determination and assignment of the assessment, tax status, and the taxable situs of such property.
The PVA office also keeps track of ownership changes, maintains maps of parcel boundaries, keeps descriptions of building and property characteristics up to date, keeps track of individuals and properties eligible for exemptions and other forms of property tax relief, and most importantly, analyzes trends in sale prices, construction costs, and rents to estimate the value of all assessable property.
The PVA is under the supervision of the Department of Revenue and along with all deputies must comply with policies, laws and procedures required by the Department of Revenue.