This year farmers in Huron and Lorain Counties will see their CAUV values on their property taxes adjusted. By law County Auditors are required to reappraise every parcel of land in the county every six years and do an update every three years. I want to take this opportunity to inform the public about this update and present some facts about the CAUV program since property taxes have a direct effect on the profits of farmers and the food prices for working families.
This year there are 18 other Ohio counties who will be updating their land values in addition to Huron County. Many farmers will be shocked when they discover the 2009 values. Depending on the soil type, some values have increased several hundred percent over the values of the last update. The person who is responsible for setting the CAUV values is the Tax Commissioner who is appointed by the Governor and makes his recommendations based on the recommendation of an advisory committee. The General Assembly does not determine CAUV values.
According to Ohio Administrative Code 5703-25-32, each year an agricultural advisory committee meets to advise the Ohio Tax Commissioner on and other current developments that might be considered in the determination of agricultural land values. This committee is not to be confused with the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, of which I am a member. This is a separate committee that includes representatives of the agricultural industry with key groups such as the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation on the panel.
This committee reviews “the various factors considered in arriving at agricultural land use values” and evaluates “new developments in order to make a recommendation to the commissioner” to be used in valuing agricultural use land for the next tax year.
The CAUV is written into the Ohio Constitution to ensure land used for agricultural production was valued and taxed based on capitalizing the land’s net farm income rather than its current fair market value. This program was designed to protect farmers from inflated land prices brought on by land developers.
I oppose high taxes, and believe that tax rate increases are not the answer to our problems during this tough economy. I oppose the Governor’s proposed income tax increase which would hurt not only farmers but all Ohio families. And I believe that high taxes on farmland hurt not only farmers but everyone through higher food prices.
Without a constitutional amendment, the Ohio Legislature is unable to protect against increases in CAUV taxes due to limitations by the Ohio Constitution. I am currently researching possible solutions to these skyrocketing taxes. As your Representative I will continue to seek ways to protect your livelihood and Ohio’s top industry while controlling skyrocketing taxes that affect farmers and consumers alike.
Those who are affected by the adjustment of the CAUV are encouraged to come to my Town Hall meeting in Norwalk on Wednesday 21st 2009 at the Norwalk High School Ernsthausen Performing Arts Center starting at 7:30 pm.
Thank you for allowing me to serve as your State Representative. I encourage you contact my office if you have any further questions or comments on this or other issues important to the 58th House District at 614-466-9628.