LB 194 (1999), Bill Summary


LB 194 contains both technical and substantive changes to laws related to property tax assessment and other revenue matters.  A selective analysis of various provisions of the bill is provided below.


1.    Clerical Errors:  LB 194 provides a new section of law to define "clerical error" as it relates to taxation.  Under the bill, "clerical error" means:


i.       transposition of numbers,

ii.     mathematical error,

iii.    computer malfunction causing programming and printing errors,

iv.    data entry error,

v.     items of real property other than land identified on the wrong parcel,

vi.    incorrect ownership, or

vii.   certification of an incorrect valuation to political subdivisions.


2.    Correction of Assessment Roll and Tax List:  LB 194 provides that after July 25th of each year the county assessor, with approval of the county board of equalization, must correct the assessment roll and the tax list, if necessary, in the case of a clerical error that results in a change in the value of the real property.  Clerical errors that do not result in a change of value on the assessment roll may be corrected at any time by the assessor.


3.    Assessment of Real Property:  LB 194 changes the date by which the county assessor must complete the assessment of real property from April 1st to March 20th of each year.


4.    Certification of County Assessors:  Under current law, the Property Tax Administrator is required to produce various manuals and guidelines to assist county assessors carry-out their duties.  LB 194 dramatically changes current law to require all county assessors and deputy assessors to be educated and certified by the Property Tax Administrator.


a.    Educational Courses, Standards and Criteria:  The Property Tax Administrator must establish, implement, and maintain a required system of educational courses for the certification and recertification for all county assessors.  The Administrator must also establish, through rule and regulation, the required educational standards and criteria for certification and recertification.


b.   Certificate Revocation or Suspension:  The Property Tax Administrator may invalidate the certificate of any assessor or deputy assessor who willfully fails or refuses to diligently perform his/her duties concerning the assessment of property and the duties of each assessor and deputy assessor.

c.    Procedure for Revocation/Suspension.


(1)   First Hearing:  No certificate may be revoked or suspended until a hearing is held before the Property Tax Administrator.


(2)   Probationary Period:  Prior to revocation, a one-year probationary period will be imposed, subject to oversight by the Property Tax Administrator. If during the probationary period, the assessor continues to willfully fail or refuse to diligently perform his or her duties, the Property Tax Administrator may immediately hold the second hearing.


(3)   Second Hearing:  At the end of the one-year probationary period, a second hearing must be held.  If assessment practices have improved, the probationary period will end and no revocation will be made.  If assessment practices have not improved, the assessor certificate will be revoked.


(4)   Removal from Office:  If the county assessor certificate of a person serving as assessor or deputy assessor is revoked, the person will be removed from office by the Property Tax Administrator, the office will be declared vacant, and the person will not be eligible to hold that office for a period of five years after the date of removal. 


(5)   Appeal:  Any assessor whose county assessor certificate has been revoked may appeal the decision of the Property Tax Administrator, and the appeal shall be in accordance with the Tax Equalization and Review Commission Act.