It appears that the state of Idaho has reached a new low with the property owners of Bannock County. The timing on the release of property taxes was late, due to a supposed glitch in the new service hardware. But it appears to coincide with the dramatic and critical financial blunder of monumental property value increases of $20,000 to $100,000 per property or more on its citizens. Also the day before these tax notices were received, homeowner insurance rates may have increased as some companies had early access to property tax increases before the homeowners were notified.

This brutal act of “taxation without representation” can be verified in part by my meeting with an appraiser, who was only doing her job. When I asked to be shown the photos, they compared my 100-year-old house to that enabled them to justify an increase in my assessment tax was needed, the folder was closed and I was given a “complaint” form to fill out and take to the County Commissioners office across the street. The form stated if all areas were not filled out, then it would be rejected. The bottom area of the form had house comparisons to be filled out compared to your house. These areas used to be filled out by the tax assessors, but on this form it is impossible for the homeowner to fill out because we have NO access to that information and you are only given seven working days to complete the complaint form; nonetheless, I turned it in. But on an attached sheet it states that “this form and judgment will not be a judgment concerning your property tax grievance.” So this appears to be a shell game type con by the state of Idaho whereby there can be no change to the tax assessment grievance or even a record of complaint as the administration will simply throw away the incomplete forms.

It will soon to be realized that hundreds or possibly thousands of property owners, students and businesses will not be able to pay for these atrocious increases out of pocket or they will be passed on to students and the elderly who do not have access to open bank accounts to come up with the necessary funds needed to continue renting and attending ISU or live and shop in Pocatello any more. The greed of those in charge of this monumental fiasco of property assessment increase concerning taxation, will affect everyone, from housing to transportation, service delivery, to price increases in grocery and clothing stores. The trickle-down cost increases will have no end boundary but will raise all costs to critical levels slowly or possibly quicker than supposed.

Is this more of one-party greedy governmental control, or maybe it’s time to have all the churches, state and city buildings pay their fair share of property taxes that they contribute nothing to now, without breaking the backs of the elderly, students, property owners and those on fixed incomes to avoid destroying the economy of our county and town, Pocatello? By the way, do you really think the mayor and City Council need pay increases at this moment of our local tax assessment malfunction? Let alone the unequal pay for law enforcement compared to other cities currently in mediation?

Danny Higgins,

Pocatello