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Date: December 1, 2013
American Property Tax Counsel

A new draft bill from Senator Braun could resolve many long-term frustrations about Washington’s system for excise and property tax appeals by, for example, reducing the number of levels of appellate review, removing political considerations from appointments, reducing the standard of proof in property tax cases to that of other civil litigation, improving compensation by linking salaries of tax tribunal decisionmakers to that of superior court judges, and allowing temporary appointments of decisionmakers. This last point would help address the ongoing “significant backlog” at the Board of Tax Appeals, noted in the scorecard on state tax appeals processes released this month by the Council On State Taxation (COST). (Currently the BTA estimates 14 months to schedule hearings for new appeals.) Though there are many issues to work out, such as whether the legislature could enact a judicial branch tax court instead, this is certainly a step in the right direction.

For more information, visit APTC's Washington Property Tax Updates' page.

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