2019 - 2020 LEGISLATURE
March 15, 2019 - Introduced by
Joint Legislative Council. Referred to Committee
on Agriculture, Revenue and Financial Institutions.
1An Act to amend
70.47 (2m), 70.47 (7) (af) and 70.47 (13); and to create
70.47 (12e) and 70.47 (13e) of the statutes; relating to: the submission of
3information for commercial property tax assessments.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill is explained in the Notes provided by the Joint Legislative Council in
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
Joint Legislative Council prefatory note: This bill was prepared for the Joint
Legislative Council Study Committee on Property Tax Assessment Practices. In
Wisconsin, if a property tax assessor concludes that recent sales data is insufficient to
allow assessment based on a sale of the subject property or recent sales of comparable
properties, an assessor may rely on an “income approach” to estimate a property's value
based on its income-generating potential. Under current law, an assessor may request
that a person provide information regarding the income and expenses of a property in
connection with board of review proceedings. No person may object to a valuation that
relies on the income approach unless the person provided the assessor with the requested
information at least seven days before the first meeting of the board of review.
The bill authorizes an assessor to request an enumerated list of documents at an
earlier stage in the assessment process, and regardless of the valuation approach.
Specifically, for commercial assessments, the bill authorizes an assessor, by January 15
of the current assessment year, to request a person to provide one or more of a specified
list of documents that were executed, prepared, or submitted within the current
assessment year or the three years prior to the current assessment year. The bill
generally prohibits a person who has received such a request from objecting to a valuation
before the board of review if the person did not provide the requested information by
March 31 of the current assessment year.
If the person challenging an assessment does not possess the requested documents,
the bill requires the person to make a good faith effort to obtain them. The bill authorizes
a board of review to dismiss a person's objection if the person does not demonstrate such
good faith effort, and it provides for limited judicial review of such dismissals.
The bill requires the Department of Revenue to prescribe a form listing the
documents enumerated in the bill. Under the bill, the form and documents are
confidential records of an assessor's office and must remain under seal before the board
of review and on appeal. Finally, the bill provides that documents provided under the bill
are not controlling and specifies that the bill does not limit an assessor's authority to seek
additional evidence regarding a property's value.
70.325 of the statutes is created to read:
270.325 Requirement to provide information for commercial property
To determine the value of property classified under s. 70.32 (2) 4
(a) 2. for which a person should be assessed, an assessor may request, no later than 5
January 15 of the current assessment year, the person to submit evidence of the 6
property's fair market value. An assessor shall make a request by providing the 7
person with a form prescribed by the department of revenue that the person shall 8
complete. The form prescribed by the department shall list documents that evidence 9
a commercial property's fair market value and shall require the person to declare 10
whether a document exists for the property to be assessed and, if so, to attach a copy 11
to the form. The assessor may request any of the listed documents that were 12
executed, prepared, or submitted within the current assessment year or the 3 years 13
prior to the current assessment year. The documents listed on the form shall include:
(a) All of the following relating to the rental of the property:
1. Itemized operating statements.
2. Vacancy losses.
3. Rent rolls.
5. Lease abstracts.
6. Federal tax form 8825.
(b) All of the following relating to a sale or potential sale of the property:
1. Purchase agreements.
2. Listing contracts.
3. Offers to purchase.
4. Counteroffers to purchase.
5. Condition reports.
6. Option to purchase.
7. Rights of first refusal.
8. Letters of intent.
(c) All of the following provided to a purchaser of the property no later than the 13
sale's closing date:
1. Closing statements.
2. Rent rolls.
4. Operating statements.
5. Stacking plans.
6. Title commitments.
7. Documentation of tenant delinquencies.
8. Service contracts.
10. Utility bills.
11. Environmental reports.
(d) Documents showing the cost of completed construction or completed 2
(e) Appraisals and feasibility studies.
(f) Documents provided to the federal securities and exchange commission in 5
which the property is listed or discussed.
(g) Fixed asset schedules on which the property is listed.
(h) Documents showing asset value of the property in the real estate portfolio 8
of a real estate investment trust.