A few of The Highlands' larger retailers are scheduled to discuss their latest property assessments during Ohio County Board of Review and Equalization hearings this week.
During such hearings, property owners can seek to have their latest property assessment changed by the board, which consists of county Commissioners David Sims, Tim McCormick and Randy Wharton.
The Cabela's hearing is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Room 215 of the City-County Building, 1500 Chapline St., Wheeling. Hearings for Kohl's, Target, J.C. Penney and Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack are tentatively set for this week. Feb. 28 is the last day a hearing can be held.
"It's really like a formal courtroom hearing - attorneys are present," said Kathie Hoffman, Ohio County assessor.
People who still are not satisfied with the review process after a board of review hearing can appeal to Ohio County Circuit Court.
Hoffman said she has conducted 15 informal hearings or meetings with property owners in her office; talked to about 25 people on the phone; and met with a few others on their property.
"We're not here to be ogres and assess people to death," Hoffman said.
She noted her office does not determine a property's tax value or make levy rates. The county commission, municipalities and the board of education all have levy rates. One's tax bill is determined by taking 60 percent of the appraised value and then multiplying it by the levy rate, according to information from the assessor's office.