Listers

Listers determine the value of the real and personal property in the town.  Each Vermont town has three listers, one of whom is elected each year for staggered three-year terms. Listers are directed by state law to appraise all taxable property in the town at 100% of the fair market value. Listers hold grievance hearings for those taxpayers who wish to contest listers’ appraisals. Their decisions may be appealed to the Board of Civil Authority, and listers may appear before the board to defend the appraisals in question. The Listers also serve on the Board of Tax Abatement to determine whether a taxpayer may have his or her taxes abated.

Many of the activities associated with the Grand List have requirements concerning timing, notification, format and substancethat, by State statute, must be strictly adhered to. The elected listers work with and oversee the timely adherence to these statutes by our  Grand List maintenance contractor Vermont Appraisal Compnay.

Procedural details must also be followed by the property owner in requesting any changes/corrections to the information that resides in the Grand List.  Forms are available and can be printed, filled-out, and then mailed to the Town Office to the attention of the Listers.

Lister and Assessor Handbook

A Guide for Vermont Listers and Assessors

Published by the Division of Property Valuation and Review

Vermont Department of Taxes 06-2018 Pub. GB-1143

Scroll down the page to access Town Parcel Maps.

Listers:

Tim Denny, Chair

Kerrie Bushway, Vice-Chair

Tom Jacobs, Secretary

Office Hours:

Monday 9 am - Noon

Tuesday  3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Listers are also available by appointment

Office number: 802-765-4360

listers@straffordvt.org

Change of Mailing Address Form  - Signature required

Grievance Form - signature required

Lister Cards are available on line. 

Click here  

The records available here have the property descriptions and assessments as of 4-1-2022.

What is Property Transfer Tax?

When Should You File a Property Transfer Tax Return?

A Property Transfer Tax Return must be filed with a town clerk whenever a deed(s) transferring title to real property is delivered to a town clerk for recording. A town clerk cannot record any deed unless it is accompanied by a completed Property Transfer Tax Return.

Introduction to grieving  a property tax assessment

The Board of Listers is dedicated to providing a just and equitable assessment for all Strafford properties and recognizes the importance of the property tax assessment appeal process (formally known as grieving). The Listers are available at any time during the year to discuss assessments, but we especially anticipate interaction with owners during the grievance period.

Every spring the Listers update the Grand List to account for property improvements that have occurred since April 1st of the previous year. We are also tasked with updating Current Use Allocation information, which affects the amount of Current Use exemption to one’s taxable value. After the preliminary Grand List is completed, landowners whose assessment or allocation has changed are mailed a letter briefly describing the changes and the schedule for appealing their property tax assessment. Property owners not receiving a change of assessment notice may also grieve. Grievance hearings are held over one or two days in early to mid-June.

 

Prior to requesting a grievance hearing, property owners are encouraged to discuss their questions or concerns with the Listers, because in many cases the situation can be resolved without a hearing. Examples that can be resolved without a grievance hearing are: address corrections, undisputed property line issues, undisputed parcel descriptions, changes in parcel condition such as the removal of a building not noted by the Listers and other factual errors. However, if a disagreement remains, property owners should request a grievance hearing.

Property owners wishing to grieve should consider the following:

 

  1. The only purpose of grievance hearings is to determine an agreeable assessed value of a property (32 VSA 3431). Listers have nothing to do with the tax rate or the ultimate tax on a property.

  2. Grievance hearings are scheduled to be 15 minutes. This time is used only to hear the appeal and not to resolve it. Resolution is done in a subsequent executive session of the Listers.

  3. In advance of your presentation, you should gather factual evidence and organize your arguments for presentation in the clearest possible form. At the hearing, briefly identify all of your points of concern at the beginning of your presentation. The more specific you are in stating your concerns the easier it is for the Listers to address them. You may return to any point for further discussion and to answer questions from the Listers.

  4. A more complete presentation of the grievance process has been prepared by the Vermont Institute for Government. The pdf can be downloaded with this web address: https://www.uvm.edu/sites/default/files/Center-for-Rural-Studies/VIG%20Guides/VIG-appealing-2020.pdf

Important dates for grieving will be available at the Town Office and announced on the Strafford Vital Communities discussion list. Anyone may subscribe to this discussion list by sending a blank message to: strafford-subscribe@lists.vitalcommunities.org.

Strafford's Parcel Maps

There are a few options to view parcel data.

 

Interactive Web Maps from Vermont Center of Geographic Information (VCGI)

 

VT Parcel Viewer: https://maps.vcgi.vermont.gov/ParcelViewer/

Parcel boundaries as of April 1, 2021 connected to the 2020 Grand List (ownership as of April 1, 2020). As a consequence, there may be missing ownership data on some parcels.

 

VT Interactive Map Viewer: https://maps.vermont.gov/vcgi/html5viewer/?viewer=vtmapviewer 

The same parcel boundaries in the VT Parcel Viewer, as well as many other data layers (hydrology, geology, LiDAR-derived products).

 

Google Earth

 

KML files of parcels and contiguous lot (also known as “inactive properties”) boundaries are available (click each hyperlink to download). They can be viewed using Google Earth Desktop (available for download here). These files reflect parcel boundaries as of April 1, 2021 connected to the 2021 Grand List (ownership as of April 1, 2021).

Steps to View in Google Earth:

1. Open Google Earth Desktop.

2. Open the KML file(s) that you have saved to your computer (File menu → Open). The files will appear in the Temporary Places section if the sidebar is open (toggle the sidebar option on/off from the View menu).

3. If you want the files present every time you open Google Earth, save them to My Places (File menu → Save → Save to My Places). Alternatively, you will be given the option to save the files when you exit the program.

4. You can toggle visibility of the parcels by clicking the checkbox next to the name of the parcel layer.

 

Parcel data for the 2022 Grand List (as of April 1, 2022) will be available in late July/early August 2022.

 

NOTE: These parcel data do not take the place of a legal survey or other primary source documentation. They are an approximation of property lines used for listing purposes only and cannot be used to determine legal boundaries. Official source information can be obtained at the Town Clerk’s office.

 

Any significant discrepancies should be reported to the Strafford Listers’ office.