The limit applies to taxing districts, not individual parcels of property. The regular property tax levy of a taxing district is limited to a one percent increase over the highest allowable levy since 1986, plus an amount attributable to new construction. Special levies and voted bond issues are not subject to the limit.
How the 1 Percent Property Tax Levy Limit Works.
Special levies are approved by the voters. Regular levies are set by the directors or commissioners of each taxing district, subject to statutory maximum rates.
RCW 84.52 - Levy of Taxes
Each year the commissioners or directors of each taxing district meet in open session to adopt a budget for the following year. The district submits the budget to the Assessor, who verifies that the budget is within statutory and constitutional limitations, and computes the required levy rate. The levy rate is the amount to be collected divided by the total assessed value of the district, and is expressed as a rate times per thousand dollars of assessed valuation. For example, a levy rate of fifty cents for emergency medical service would mean that the owner of a $100,000 home would pay $50 for that particular levy. (100 x .50)
State law requires that the Assessor maintain an active and systematic program of real property inspection. Real property is land and any improvements, such as buildings, attached to the land. All real property in Kitsap County is physically inspected at least once every six years on a cyclical basis. In addition, assessed values are updated countywide on an annual basis by statistical analysis. If properties in a particular area consistently sell for more or less than the assessed value, the assessment roll will be adjusted to reflect real estate market conditions in that area. If the characteristics of a property changes because of remodeling, additions, subdivisions, etc., a new value is determined.
RCW 84.41.030 - Revaluation program to be on continuous basis
RCW 84.41.041 - Physical inspection and valuation of taxable property required
Yes, the County Assessor does have the legal authority to access your property in order to make an inspection for valuation in accordance with Washington State Law. If an appraiser from our office contacts you, comes to your door, or you see them in your neighborhood, please understand that they are trying to verify the characteristics of your property to ensure the accuracy of our data.
RCW 84.40.025 - Access to property required
With few exceptions, all information upon which property taxes are based is public record. The Assessor's records are open to public inspection from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday and 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Friday. Assessor information is now available online or call 360.337.7160. You may call toll-free from Bainbridge Island 842.2061; from Olalla 851.4147, or fax 360.337.4874.