In New Hampshire, town assessors are beginning to treat view amenities as a separate line adjustment. The idea is that if a property has a value premium because to its views, it is taxed over above other properties. In some markets, the [view adjustment is a separate line item [Washington Post]](http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/31/AR2005103100906_pf.html)
The concept here is that the overall value must be accurately reflected. It appears that the view amenity was not fully accounted for and it was significant enough for the state to itemize the adjustment which was the subject of the recent complaints.
Tags: Soapbox Blog, Appraisal Process, Adjustments
This is a convoluted problem. It is reasonable that a more valuable property, due to its views, should be taxed higher – standard practice in all urban areas of the country. But then you have a higher income population in urban areas than in rural areas and it appears that higher taxes would be a hardship for that segment of the population who also do not have the benefits afforded to those living in urban areas. Zoning would have to prohibit large scale development or else the beauty of the open land would be destroyed and with it their main industry, tourism. It seems a city or state income tax and/or a sales tax would be a better solution. Property owners who are taxed the same as those with more “valuable ” property due to views might want to look at the big picture in terms of their community rather than their own limited interests which may eventually turn against them.
Property taxes are “ad valorem” taxes which means it is according to the value of the property. One’s physical condition or handicaps has no being on what a property is worth. Even if one could not swim does not mean a property on the ocean, lake, river, etc is worth less. The reporter is sensationalizing a sensitive subject when there is no story to be told.