A reminder to taxpayers that the deadline to appeal property tax valuations to county boards of equalization is this Monday, August 21, 2017, by petition or letter. (The deadline is set as the third Monday in August. Ark. Code Ann. § 26-27-317.) Property assessments should have been issued by the county assessors in July.
In addition to ordinary valuation disputes, manufacturers and distributors should ensure that they are receiving the benefit of the freeport exemption, which is really an exclusion from tax for property ultimately destined for shipment out of the state. See Ark. Code Ann. § 26-26-1102(b). In a 2014 case, the Supreme Court of Arkansas treated failure to claim the freeport exemption as a valuation mistake, not an erroneous assessment, and so denied relief to the taxpayer for failing to follow the procedures for appeal of valuations. See Outdoor Cap Co., Inc. v. Benton Cty., 2014 Ark. 536. While the statue limiting correction of property tax assessment errors has since been liberalized somewhat by Act 659 of 2017, a property tax fairness bill, the treatment of the freeport exemption as a valuation dispute may well still be the case.