Frequently asked questions on tax statements

Jarret P. Heil

Marshall County Treasurer

The Marshall County Treasurer’s Office, along with other county offices, relocated to the downtown Great Western Bank building following the tornado and destruction to the courthouse. During the relocation move, the Auditor/Recorder Office and our office persistently completed the annual tasks of preparing, verifying and sending out the property tax statements payable in 2018/2019. The tax statements were mailed out during the last week of August. Here are the answers to four frequently asked questions about property taxes this time of year:

How are my property taxes figured?

First your property is assessed a value by the County Assessor. The value is multiplied by the rollback to determine the taxable value. The rollback is computed by the Iowa Department of Revenue which is determined by the market of the class of property which are residential, commercial, industrial, agriculture land etc. Then any exemptions are subtracted from the taxable value and that amount is multiplied by the total tax rate to equal the gross taxes.

The total tax rate comes from each of your taxing entities grouped together. Based on your location, property tax dollars are distributed to the following taxing entities: your city or township, school district, Marshall County, Community College District, Assessor, Ag Extension and the State of Iowa. Each year these entities certify a budget to determine their tax rate by taking the dollar amount needed to provide their services and divide it by all the taxable value of properties within their boundaries. Then each tax rate from all the entities are consolidated into the total tax rate for your property based on its location.

Finally subtract any property tax credits from the gross tax to equal the net annual taxes.

Let’s take a look at an example residential property and figure out the taxes. This example property is in the Marshalltown neighborhood a couple blocks south of the high school and is assessed at $100,000. The residential rollback is 55.6%, the total tax rate is 40.95, with no exemptions and the owner has a homestead credit of $198. See the formula below that the net annual taxes would be $2,128 for this example property.

Assessed value X rollback = taxable value ($100,000 X 55.629% = $55,629)

Taxable value – exemptions X total tax rate/1000 = gross taxes [($55,629 – 0) X 40.95/1000 = $2,278]

Gross taxes – tax credits = your net annual taxes ($2,278 – $198 = $2,080)

Where are my property tax dollars going?

This year the Treasurer’s Office is certified to collect $54.5 million in property taxes (does not include excise tax from utility companies). A detailed tax distribution breakdown is located at the bottom of your tax statement. Here is a quick look at the more notable pieces of the total pie for this year:

Marshalltown School District: $17.1 million

City of Marshalltown: $11.5 million (plus $905,000 TIF property tax dollars)

Marshall County: $12.4 million (plus $45,000 TIF property tax dollars)

Iowa Valley Community College District: $4.6 million

East Marshall School District: $3.6 million

West Marshall School District: $3.05 million

Green Mountain Garwin School District: $1.9 million

Should I receive a tax statement?

If you did not receive a statement and you believe you should have, contact our office to verify the mailing address we have on file. If you sold or bought property in the past year, it may be worth verifying in your closing documents to determine who is to pay this cycle’s billed property taxes. Additionally, we did have a glitch in our transfer computer program that did not notify our Treasurer’s department of an address change on a small percentage of transferred parcels during the past year. Therefore a few statements were sent to the previous owner. These parcels are being corrected in our system with an additional statement being sent to the new owner.

How do I pay my property taxes?

First half property tax payments are due Oct. 1 in the Marshall County Treasurer’s Office which is temporarily relocated to the second floor of the downtown Great Western Bank building, located at 11 N First Ave. in Marshalltown. You may pay online at www.iowatreasurers.org. To pay by mail, send a check to Marshall County Treasurer, 1 E Main St., Marshalltown and the post office will reroute it to our temporary location. If you have any property tax questions you may contact our office at 641-844-2730 or tax@marshallcountyia.gov. We are open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30pm.