Most will see a tax increase of at least 3 percent in the tax statement sent out last week.

HOLLY M. GILL/MADRAS PIONEER - Tax payments are due back at the Jefferson County Courthouse Annex by Thursday, Nov. 15.Across Jefferson County, property values for the 2018-19 tax year increased from a low of 1 percent all the way up to 28 percent, depending on location.

According to Jean McCloskey, county assessor, countywide, properties were up an average of 4.7 percent; Madras properties were up about 6.9 percent; Culver, 3.9 percent; Metolius, 9 percent; Crooked River Ranch, 4.8 percent; and Three Rivers, 6.2 percent.

"What drives that increase are new construction on the account, new levies and new bonds," she said. "As a taxpayer, our taxes typically are up 3 percent."

As an example of a new levy, McCloskey cited the Canyon View neighborhood, which voted to become a taxing district. "The Canyon View Road District is going to go up beyond that, because they're paying for a special road district levy."

Tax statements were mailed out last week, and are due on Thursday, Nov. 15, at the Jefferson County Courthouse Annex, at 66 SE D St. Payments can be dropped in the box on the east side of the building, delivered to the finance department inside the building, or mailed in. In order to receive a discount for a timely payment, mailed payments must be postmarked on or before Nov. 15.

Because Measure 5, passed in 1990 to limit taxes, capped taxation at $10 per $1,000 of real market value for general government, and $5 per $1,000 for education, some levies experience "compression," when taxation exceeds a combined total of $15 per $1,000.

"Jefferson County general has a compression loss of $2,896 with its permanent rate levy, where the local option levy of the Sheriff's Department is $158,358," she said. "The local option levies take the compression first; if more is needed on the individual account, it then goes to the permanent rate levies like county general."

"As market values have increased back to what they were at the height of the market in 2007, compression is less of a factor in the calculation of tax on the individual account, as well as a loss to the districts," she said, noting that compression is calculated on the market value of each account.

The county's total assessed value increased to $1,771,039,638, a 4.72 percent increase over last year's value of $1,691,192,619.

The top 10 taxpayers for the year were the following:

1 - Portland General Electric, $3,329,751.32.

2 - Gas Transmission Northwest Corp., $569,196.16.

3 - PacifiCorp, $523,362.73.

4 - Bright Wood Corp., $416,221.69.

5 - Keith Manufacturing Co., $240,643.05.

6 - Warm Springs Power Enterprises, $217,675.36.

7 - Apple Inc., $192,082.25.

8 - BNSF Railway Co., $191,191.55.

9 - Centurylink, $171,999.84.

10 - Safeway Inc., $140,545.38.

For more information, contact the Jefferson County Assessor's Office at 541-475-2443.


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