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The Reval in Bayonne

Published On: April 16th, 2016Categories: Tax Appeal

In other news the Hudson County Tax Board has now ordered the City of Bayonne to complete a revaluation by 2019. Mayor Jimmy Davis of Bayonne is very upset. This was done upon a complaint filed by Peter Cresci, Esq. on behalf of resident taxpayer Pat Desmond. Both of these gentlemen were former supporters of Mayor Davis but are now anti-Davis political agitators, and both have been in the news recently for other reasons (click on their names for to follow the link).

Mayor Davis of Bayonne

Mayor “Jimmy” Davis of Bayonne

Besides the ordinary political reasons to oppose a revaluation, there is a legitimate argument in Bayonne that the conventional wisdom of “in a reval 1/3 get tax increases, 1/3 get decreases and 1/3 stay the same” does not apply. Some believe that the last reval put a higher burden, in the form of higher assessments, on the City’s industrial properties than they will in a reval done today. Remember there are refineries, ports and other ratables on the east side of the Bayonne penninsula that heavily subsidize the City’s tax base. Bayonne already has one of the highest effective tax rates in the County, and if the ratable base is thus shifted the owners of residential properties in town could see even higher taxes. The fact that the County ordered it instead of the State may give Mayor Davis better control over its handling, and certainly the City may be able to drag it out at least another year past 2019. Unlike Jersey City, Bayonne hasn’t re-drawn its tax map in decades and that is a time-consuming prerequisite to any reval.

Either way this issue is sure to stay in the news at least a few more weeks, as Bayonne prepares its budget for 2016 which will almost certainly include another tax hike. After all, every year the City spends $20 million more than it receives in tax revenue, and there are few places left to plug that gap…

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