PADUCAH — The city of Paducah is moving forward after learning the city lost millions of dollars in property tax revenue. That is because thousands of properties within city limits haven't been assessed in decades.
Dealing with issues in the McCracken County Property Valuation Administrator's Office is like peeling back an onion. Current PVA Bill Dunn is looking into how much money the city of Paducah lost.
"Downtown is in horrible shape are far as assessing goes. They literally haven't been looked at in years," he said.
Downtown is full of commercial buildings, and they bring in a large chunk of change in property taxes. Dunn showed us prime real estate around Paducah that's worth tens of thousands of dollars more than their current assessment.
The city of Padcuah's annual audits show Kentucky Oaks Mall is the largest source of revenue for the city. Prior to this year, city records show its property value has not changed since 2006. The PVA reported to the city of Paducah that the property was worth $50.9 million for the past 12 years. Before that, it was worth $42.6 million. Dunn said properties are supposed to be looked at every four years. The city's records show the Walmart on Hinkleville Road has been assessed at $10.6 million since 2007.
"Unfortunately, that's common for the records," Dunn said.
This year, Kentucky Oaks Mall's property value was lowered to $48.5 million, but Dunn said property value goes up and down frequently on commercial properties. The city of Paducah will never know how much money it potentially lost due no one coming to look at properties in the Hinkelville Road area.
Dunn is asking the city for help hiring a part-time assessor for about $13,000. He said it's an investment. "$13,000 could bring the city in a lot more money," Dunn said.
We reached out to all city commissioners and the mayor about giving the PVA office money for a part-time assessor. They all told us they're in favor of it. The Paducah City Commission will bring this issue up at a meeting in the next few weeks.