Rutherford County Property Assessor Rob Mitchell sent the following letter to local media outlets:
I am pleased to announce the conclusion of another very successful year in the Assessor's Office.
It is important that your government be open and transparent. The office of Property Assessor discovers, lists and values over 112,000 parcels of Real and Tangible Personal Property in Rutherford County having an appraised value of approximately 21 billion dollars and an assessed value of over 6 billion dollars. We are the 5th largest and fastest growing County in Tennessee. We create and maintain the assessment maps for each parcel in 624 sq/miles of territory which comprises Rutherford County. Thirty four percent of the Counties current budget of $507 million dollars is a result of the diligent work of the employees of your Assessor's Office.
Over the last three years we have made many improvements to the property assessor's office we:
- Resolved hundreds of unnecessary appeals from previous administrations
- Resolved injustices inflicted on local farmers
- Changed State law defending property rights to prevent widowed surviving spouses from being taxed off their property
- Won grants to incorporate hybrid vehicles into our service fleet saving fuel costs and bettering the environment
- Developed a public website which is praised for ease of use
- Developed the State's first Property Search App for mobile devices
- Developed the only "real time" property review process in the State saving taxpayers $64K dollars per year
- Created with Middle Tennessee State University the first County/University public art gallery with the Murfree Galleries
- Won national recognition for our commitment to save taxpayers' dollars
- Redesigned assessment change notices for greater ease of use
- Remodeled our reception area for improved customer service
- Completed a highly successful four year county wide reappraisal
- Wrote an Employee Handbook to defend the rights of assessor's office employees
- Won the right to compensate our employees fairly based upon their skills and work load
- Created a presentation for a national conference on our "best practices" approach to assessment and office efficiency
- Returned to the General Fund $1.338 million dollars in SAVINGS over three years! $588,736 in savings this year alone!
It is our goal to become the best managed Assessor's Office in Tennessee. We have taken the bold step to become one of only 24 other assessment jurisdictions in the nation to achieve the Certificate of Excellence in Assessment Administration designation through the International Association of Assessing Officers. You have our commitment that we will continue to make efficient use of your taxpayer money. We will continue our emphasis on customer service and in providing a meaningful return on investment.
Thank you for your continued support of our mission and for allowing me the opportunity to serve you.