Lister Education Funds
From John Fike VALA President
Several Listers recently contacted me regarding a recent memo that was sent to the Towns’ Treasurers indicating that the Lister Education Funds were sent in error for 2015. This information created confusion with Listers because they had not received a copy of the memo. Jim Knapp and I had an extensive conversation about this Lister Education Fund Issue. The summary below will provide Listers an explanation about the payment issue.
Near the end of 2014 The Finance and Management Dept. made a decision. Since the source of the Lister Education Funds is the State Education Fund, obtaining these funds falls under the Grant Program. The methodology of receiving funds under this program requires a written and signed grant agreement with the Town and PV&R. There is also a follow up procedure required on the use of these funds.
Before Jim could address this issue, the Lister Education Funds were sent out in error for 2015. The quick fix to correct this error was to subtract the money sent to the towns for Lister education from the $9.50/ parcel for GL maintenance and reappraisals. When the education per parcel amount received is added to the GL/Reappraisal amount receive the total will equal the $9.50/ parcel.
What will happen short term for the Lister Education Funds? PV& R will probably need to send out the Grand Documents to be signed by the Town Treasurer. Jim is having an appeal document put together to delay implementation for a year or make the process less onerous. Tax is also exploring a possible solution where Towns can request reimbursement for actual expenses paid for education up the amount allocated to that Town for Lister education. Both options are being explored.
Jim has several excellent ideas to make the process more efficient and accountable for everyone. He will need time to create the Bill Language that the Legislature can act on.
Jim needs every Lister’s cooperation and support as he works though this issue. When your town’s financial officer receives the documents make sure they are completed and returned promptly.
Current Use Department News
Coming to your town – eCuse – Spring 2015
The Vermont Department of Taxes is pleased to announce that eCUSE, the web-based service for the Current Use Program (Use Value Appraisal), will soon be available statewide. eCuse was developed to bring new efficiencies to the application and review process for all users, including town officials. It will provide assessing officials with the ability to view applications and other documents affecting properties within your towns. eCuse will allow you to see current use applications, including those which have been submitted as well as those that are under review, giving you the ability to track applications and manage your workloads. Municipal clerks will be able to access the approved applications online, print the documents required for recording, and enter the recording information. Invoicing in the new system will be automated.
Providing the Department’s Current Use section with the valuation of the land and buildings will continue through the file exchange with Current Use via the NEMRC module. The Department will be contacting town clerks and listers in the next few weeks with instructions on how to set up accounts and use the new system. After you receive the email with your username and login instructions, you can contact your District Advisor or call 802-828-6887 if you have further questions.
2015 TOWN OFFICERS EDUCATION CONFERENCE
The TOEC conferences, now in their 70th year, are organized by University of Vermont Extension in partnership with several participating organizations. They are designed to help town clerks, planners, listers, select board members and other officials do their jobs more effectively by providing updates on tax laws and regulations, municipal record keeping and effective strategies for handling planning, zoning and other town issues. The attached link will take your directly to the UVM site for TOEC which allows you to look at the brochure as well as Register for this years conference. This is the link http://go.uvm.edu/toec to UVM for the TOEC conference.
Hope to see you there in April. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at TLeblanc@sburl.com.
VALA Vice President
SAVE THE DATE!
We have finalized the locations for the 2015 Town Officers Education Conference.
Double Tree Hotel in Burlington April 1st
Lake Morey Inn in Fairlee April 22nd
Grand Hotel in Killington April 29
Registration fee is $65.00, we will also have vendor booths. Anyone interested in being a vendor should contact Pamela.email@example.com
As a member of the TOEC Committee and long time participant I strongly encourage your municipality to plan to support this long standing tradition. This is a unique conference where all parts of local and state government can come together to enrich our towns.
Michelle W. Wilson, Operations Chief
Property Valuation and Review
Department of Taxes