City of Alexandria
BOARD OF EQUALIZATION AND ASSESSMENT REVIEW
Rules and Procedures for Hearings
Meetings are open to the public
All meetings of the Board of Equalization and Assessment Review (Board) are public meetings. All meeting dates and times are posted on the City's calendar.
The Board will convene in the Spring of 2014 to determine meeting dates. All meeting dates and times are posted on the City web site "Boards & Commissions" webpage. Appellants are required to appear at a specific time and will be heard within 90 minutes of the time they appear.
Information presented by the Office of Real Estate Assessments (Office) regarding the income and expenses of income-producing properties is not public. The Board will convene in Executive Session if necessary to discuss confidential income and expense information related to the specific property. All written documentation related to actual income and expenses will remain confidential and are excluded from FOIA.
Procedures during Hearings
Under most circumstances, hearings will last 15-20 minutes for residential properties and 30 minutes for commercial properties. The appellant/taxpayer will present their appeal first with the Board allowing no more than five minutes for residential and eight minutes for commercial. The Office makes the second presentation, not to exceed five minutes for residential and eight minutes for commercial. Neither the appellant/taxpayer nor the Department shall interrupt during these opening statements. The taxpayer may take five minutes to respond to the Office's position.
Board members may ask questions of either party.
Once the Board declares testimony is closed, it will deliberate and announce its decision. Participants will not be recognized during the Board's deliberations on the appeal.
In the event the Board elects to postpone a decision, as a courtesy, the Board will instruct the Board clerk to contact the appellant to return on the day the Board is to render it's decision. The appellant is not permitted to speak nor present additional information during this second hearing.
In any matter before the Board where the current value of the property (or the aggregate value of contiguous properties owned by the same individual or entity), as assessed by the Office, is at least Ten Million Dollars ($10,000,000.00), a minimum of four (4) Board members shall participate in the hearing and decision of such appeal. In the event less than four (4) members are present for such hearing the hearing shall be re-scheduled, unless the appellant/taxpayer and Office agree to proceed with the Board members present at such hearing.
Evidence presented at BOE Hearings
Neither the appellant/taxpayer nor the Office shall present new written evidence at the hearing. An exception will be made for photographs of the property in question, as photos are often hard to photocopy accurately; similarly, blow-ups of maps or site-plans are acceptable, if they are enlargements of previously submitted material. A participant may use a drawing board, easel or similar tool (provided by the participant) to emphasize a particular fact, but neither new material, nor material organized differently than in the written submission is allowed.
Non-appearances of appellants
In the event of an unexpected non-appearance of an appellant, the Board will hear the case based on the material and the personnel before it, or, in extenuating circumstances the Board may elect to postpone the case.
Non-emergent postponements of cases
The Board will exercise it's discretion in cases of emergency-caused postponements of cases, including but not limited to those caused by unusual traffic conditions and medical necessity. An owner or a tax agent will be granted only one postponement request per year; such request must be made five days prior to the scheduled hearing to the Board clerk. Once the owner or agent has obtained one non-emergent postponement, no others shall be granted during the course of the calendar year.
The owner or agent, after receiving a scheduling letter, may petition the Board in writing to withdraw a case at least three business days prior to the hearing date. Withdrawal will be granted at the Board's discretion. The appellant seeking to withdraw a case should be prepared to appear on schedule, unless notified otherwise.
A party wishing to utilize an electronic recording device or a court stenographic reporter must inform the Board in writing at least 24 hours in advance that they are planning to do so. Such recording shall be executed in a non-disruptive manner.
Neither videos nor pictures may be taken at hearings.
Questions concerning Board of Equalization rules and procedures may be addressed to the Board Clerk at 703.746.4180.