Sussex Co. to begin property reassessments after lawsuit settles


SUSSEX COUNTY, Delaware – Delaware is adding another chapter to its multi-year legal battle over property values. The state settled in with Delawareans for Educational Opportunity and the NAACP of Delaware earlier this year. The plaintiffs said the model used to assess property in Delaware is outdated and puts students in public schools at a disadvantage.

As part of the settlement, the three counties agreed to conduct a general reassessment of all properties under their jurisdiction.In Sussex County, over 180,000 residential and commercial properties will be reviewed. The county is asking the public for help in determining the best way to proceed with the reassessment. Five face-to-face meetings and one virtual session have been scheduled to give the public the opportunity to express themselves and learn more about how the process works.

Face-to-face meetings will take place at the following times and locations: Thursday, September 23, 2021, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., Milton Fire Department, 116 Front Street, Milton; Thursday, September 23, 2021, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Delaware Technical Community College-Owen Campus, 21179 College Drive, Georgetown; Monday, September 27, 2021, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Delaware National Guard-Bethany Beach Training Site, 163 Scannell Boulevard, Bethany Beach; Wednesday, September 29, 2021, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at Millsboro Town Center, 322 Wilson Highway, Millsboro; Thursday, September 30, 2021, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Seaford Volunteer Fire Department, 302 King St., Seaford.

Virtual event takes place Monday, September 27, 2021, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., it will be available on any computer or mobile device at this link. The county is asking people to remember that each site may have different COVID-19 policies. So, people who plan to attend should prepare in advance. County representatives will be on site, along with representatives from Tyler Technologies. The company will take care of the reassessment process. This is the first time that Sussex County has undergone a general reassessment.

The reassessment process includes the evaluation and recalculation of properties based on accepted industry practices. The aim is to come up with new valuations that will show the true value of these properties. These reassessments are all part of a formula used to determine the individual tax bills homeowners have to pay each year. Bills include taxes for independent county and local school districts. Currently, Delaware law requires landowners in Sussex County to pay school taxes on behalf of school districts. These funds are then returned to the State of Delaware.

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