Malia Cohen

Malia M. Cohen

Chair, Board of Equalization, 2nd District

News Release
For Immediate Release
August 30, 2019

NR 19-06
Contact: 916-445-4081

Taxpayers Bring Concerns to Board of Equalization

Board Also Acts on Statewide Hearings on Modernizing Property Tax Administration and Board Member Strategic Planning Meeting

Sacramento – The California State Board of Equalization (BOE), at its monthly meeting in Sacramento on August 27, 2019, held the annual Taxpayers' Bill of Rights Hearing, and acted to advance statewide public hearings on property tax administration and the development of a Board Member Strategic Plan.

Regarding the Taxpayers' Bill of Rights Hearing, State Board of Equalization Chair Malia M. Cohen commented, “The Board welcomed taxpayers from around the state to express their views on the operations of property tax administration both at the Board of Equalization and at local County Assessors' Offices. There was a healthy discussion, and we look forward to reviewing the response from the BOE's Taxpayer Rights Advocate, as well as senior BOE staff, to the concerns raised by the taxpayers.”

The Board also authorized conducting a series of statewide informational hearings on “Modernizing California's Property Tax System.” The first informational hearing will be held in San Diego on Thursday, September 19, 2019, after the conclusion of the annual meeting of the California Assessors' Association.

Chair Cohen commented, “Each year, property tax revenues generate approximately $70 billion to fund our schools and local government services, such as first responders dedicated to law enforcement and fire suppression. It is our obligation, as Board Members, to understand the issues and challenges facing property tax administration to ensure this revenue stream flows uninterrupted, accurate property values are enrolled in a timely fashion, and taxpayers receive fair and equitable services.”

Chair Cohen continued, “Fundamental to effective property tax administration is making sure the BOE and Assessors have the appraiser personnel they need to perform their duties to the highest standards. We look forward to hearing from County Assessors, experts, and the public at this hearing so we can effectively recruit and retain new appraisers and provide training and continuing education for these property tax professionals.”

The Board also acted to facilitate a publicly-noticed Board Member Strategic Planning Session at an upcoming Board Meeting. The Board Member Strategic Planning process is an initiative championed by BOE Vice Chair Antonio Vazquez.

Malia M. Cohen is the Chair of the California State Board of Equalization representing nearly 10 million constituents residing in 23 counties in Northern and Central California, extending from Del Norte County in the north to Santa Barbara County in the south. Chair Cohen is the youngest Constitutional Officer serving in California.

The Board of Equalization is California's statewide elected tax board. Its five members include four members elected in districts, and the State Controller. Under its constitutional mandate, the BOE oversees the assessment practices of the state's 58 county assessors, who are charged with establishing values for approximately 13.6 million assessments each year. In addition, the BOE assesses the property of regulated railroads and specific public utilities, and is responsible for the alcoholic beverage tax and tax on insurers.

Note: This news release may discuss complex tax laws and concepts. It may not address every situation and is not considered written advice. Changes in law or regulations may have occurred since the time this news release was written. If there is a conflict between the text of this news release and the law, decisions will be based upon the law and not this news release.