The Board of Assessors is the local agency responsible for the assessment and the administration of all local taxes provided for by the General Laws of the Commonwealth. The Board consists of three elected members. Providing support for the Board are the Director of Assessing and the Administrative Assistant. The mission of the Board of Assessors is to ‘‘truly and impartially, according to (its) best skill and judgment, assess and apportion all such (property) taxes (and) neither overvalue nor undervalue any property subject to taxation’’ - Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 41, Section 29.
There are three principal local taxes administered by the Board: real and personal property taxes, and motor vehicle excise taxes. The assessors are responsible for determining the real and personal property assessments and calculating the appropriate amount of each type of tax. That information is then forwarded to the tax collector, who then assumes responsibility for issuing bills and collecting the tax. The Board is also responsible for processing requests for adjustments to the original taxes, and issuing any appropriate abatement.
The Board is supervised in its administration of local taxation by the Department of Revenue's Division of Local Services, as provided by Chapter 58 of the General Laws. Among other duties, the Division of Local Services reviews the Board's assessment procedures every three years in order to certify that property is being assessed at its full cash value, reviews its revenue and spending projections to ensure compliance with Proposition 2-1/2 prior to approving a tax rate each year, and issues legal opinions and sets procedural guidelines that must be followed. Every three years the Department of Revenue audits the Board of Assessors’ records and procedures for certification. The Department of Revenue’s last certification of the Board of Assessors’ records and procedures was done in Fiscal Year 2012.
How are my taxes spent? Can be found in the FAQ section