ASSESSOR ACCEPTING ANNUAL APPLICATIONS FOR VALUATION FREEZES

ASSESSOR ACCEPTING ANNUAL APPLICATIONS FOR VALUATION FREEZES

Certain Doña Ana County property owners who occupy single-family dwellings may be eligible for a freeze of their taxable value as determined by the Doña Ana County Assessor’s Office. Freezing the property valuation will minimize future tax obligations for those who qualify.

The valuation freeze is available to property owners 65 or older, or those who are considered permanently disabled, and whose total household modified gross income did not exceed $32,000 in 2008. All applicants must meet the income requirement. Modified gross income is defined as all income from all sources undiminished by losses. The income requirement is adjusted each year according to the federal consumer price index.

To qualify for the valuation freeze, you must apply annually no later than 30 days after the official date of mailing of the Doña Ana County Assessor’s Official Notice of Value. This year’s notices will be mailed March 31, 2009.

Supporting documentation required when attempting to qualify by age and income includes a completed application, proof of income (a certified copy of the property owner’s 2008 New Mexico income tax return, and a certified copy of the property owner’s 2008 federal income tax return), and proof of age (a valid New Mexico driver’s license or birth certificate).

Supporting documentation required when attempting to qualify due to disability and income include a completed application, proof of income (a certified copy of the 2008 New Mexico income tax return, and a certified copy of the property owner’s 2008 federal income tax return), and an award letter from either Social Security or Workers’ Compensation confirming the permanent disability.

“It is important that people who may qualify for this freeze are aware of it,” said County Assessor Gary Perez, “since it will stabilize their property tax burden. Our office strives to make sure all property owners are aware of all the benefits and exemptions available to them under state law.”

New legislation has changed the maximum modified gross income from the amount of $21,600 per year to $32,000 per year. “The recent change in the law should allow many more people to take advantage of this benefit,” Perez said.

Applications are available at the Doña Ana County Assessor’s Office at 845 N. Motel Blvd., Las Cruces. Residents with Internet access may also download an application from www.donaanacounty.org/assessor/

For more information, call (505) 647-7400. Residents calling from outside the Las Cruces area may call toll-free at 1-877-827-7200 and request extension 7400.

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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (575) 525-5801.