Ag Land Assessment Task Force To Bring Recommendations To Legislature

(WNAX) — The Ag Land Assessment Task Force of the South Dakota legislature has wrapped up their interim meetings for the year. Senator Craig Kennedy of Yankton says they came up with a couple of recommendations…

“The two proposals that we are bringing out of the Committee to the Legislature this term are basically refinements of existing statute. We’re not trying to do something completely different or completely new rather we’re trying to make the tools that are already existing maybe a little easier to use or maybe a little easier to understand and apply.”

The task force has been watching the transition process of valuing and taxing ag land as it moves from sales based to productivity. Kennedy says the proposals would more closely align counties in putting values on ag land…

“This was more focused on the process or procedure where Directors of Equalization in the respective counties look at requests for some sort of an adjustment to valuation based on specific circumstances or conditions that exist on the land and enable those Directors then to make valuation adjustments.”

Kennedy says most problems they heard about had to do with individual counties rather than the overall system…

“I think actually the complaints or the problems we were seeing was concerns that Directors of Equalization weren’t being flexible enough in adapting the evaluation of specific parcels to fit the conditions of the specific parcel.”

Kennedy says those two recommendations will go to the 2020 legislative session.