Henrico real estate assessments decline again

By Andy Jenks - bio | email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) –  The assessed value of real estate in Henrico County has declined 1.13 percent for 2011, but authorities say there's reason to be optimistic.

The 1.13 percent includes the average decline in assessed value for commercial and residential properties, and represents a loss to the tax base of $361.2 million, according to county finance director John Vithoulkas. The result is a drop of about $3 million in actual revenue.

"Even though the numbers are down, what we're seeing is a turn in these numbers," Vithoulkas said Monday.

In 2010, the average drop was much worse: 7.82 percent, representing a loss of $2.7 billion to the county's tax base.

Despite the drop in the tax base, Vithoulkas said there are no plans to raise the county's tax rate, currently set at 87 cents per $100 of assessed value.

County Manager Virgil Hazelett added that he does not foresee layoffs or cuts in county service levels.

"We're optimistic we can make this work, once again, another year," Hazelett said.

County departments are being instructed to trim their budgets by 2.5 percent in all aspects except personnel, Hazelett said.

The first batch of assessment notices is expected to be mailed this week. Two more batches will go out the following week.

In 2011, the average assessment in Henrico County is $227,000. In 2008, it was $248,000.

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