Vision, Mission and Duties
The vision of the Office of the Spartanburg County Assessor is to be a model of assessment administration with a reputation for delivering impartial, accurate, and understandable valuations and assessments that exceed statutory requirements and customer expectations.
To accomplish the vision we will provide our customers, internal and external, with prompt, courteous, competent and professional service. Our work environment will promote integrity, honesty, and teamwork; will develop and challenge individual skills; and will encourage open communication. The staff will be committed, empowered, employees who are dedicated to a process of ever-improving, responsive, cost-effective service.
To efficiently conduct and complete the duties of the County Assessor as fairly, accurately, and equitably as possible; to ensure that this office continues to provide competent service to the taxpayers and all community stakeholders; and to provide leadership that will encourage staff and administration to work cooperatively in the performance of their duties.
Identify, map, classify, appraise and assess residential, commercial, agricultural and vacant real property in Spartanburg County for ad valorem taxation within the guidelines of the South Carolina Code of Laws, South Carolina Department of Revenue regulations and Spartanburg County Ordinances. Conduct informal hearings and participate in formal hearings and Administrative Law Court hearings for real estate assessment appeals by property owners. Provide annual real estate assessments to the County Auditor. Reappraise and reassess all property every five years in accordance with Section 12-43-217 of the SC Code of Laws.
Duties and Responsibilities Of Assessor As Prescribed By The South Carolina Code Of Laws
SECTION 12-37-90. Assessors to be full time; responsibilities and duties.
All counties shall have a full time assessor, whose responsibility is appraising and listing all real property, whether exempted or not, except real property required by law to be assessed by the department and property owned by the federal government, state government, county government, or any of its political subdivisions and which is exempt from property taxation. If the assessor discovers that any real property required by law to be assessed by the department has been omitted, he shall notify the department that the property has been omitted and the department is required to appraise and assess the omitted property. The assessor is responsible for the operations of his office and shall:
- (a) maintain a continuous record of recorded deed sales transactions, building permits, tax maps, and other records necessary for a continuing reassessment program;
- (b) diligently search for and discover all real property not previously returned by the owners or their agents or not listed for taxation by the county auditor, and list such property for taxation in the name of the owner or person to whom it is taxable;
- (c) when values change, reappraise and reassess real property so as to reflect its proper valuation in light of changed conditions, except for exempt property and real property required by law to be appraised and assessed by the department, and furnish a list of these assessments to the county auditor;
- (d) determine assessments and reassessments of real property in a manner that the ratio of assessed value to fair market value is uniform throughout the county;
- (e) appear as necessary before an appellate board to give testimony and present evidence as to the justification of an appraisal;
- (f) have the right of appeal from a disapproval of or modification of an appraisal made by him;
- (g) perform duties relating to the office of tax assessor required by the laws of this State;
- (h) be the sole person responsible for the valuation of real property, except that required by law to be appraised and assessed by the department, and the values set by the assessor may be altered only by the assessor or by legally constituted appellate boards, the department, or the courts;
- (i) have the right to enter and examine all new nonresidential buildings and structures and those portions of an existing nonresidential building or structure covered by a building permit for renovations or additions.
When any deed is recorded it shall be presented to the county assessor's office and have the endorsement of such office showing that the property has been identified and located on the records of the assessor's office.
SECTION 12-37-110. Auditors, assessors, and appraisers shall attend educational courses.
All auditors, assessors and appointed appraisers from an assessor's office must attend educational courses required by the department.
SECTION 12-37-210. Property which is taxable.
All real and personal property in this State, personal property of residents of this State which may be kept or used temporarily out of the State, with the intention of bringing it into the State, or which has been sent out of the State for sale and not yet sold, and all moneys, credits and investments in bonds, stocks, joint stock companies or otherwise of persons resident in this State shall be subject to taxation.
SECTION 12-37-610. Persons liable for taxes and assessments on real property.
Each person is liable to pay taxes and assessments on the real property that, as of December thirty first of the year preceding the tax year, he owns in fee, for life, or as trustee, as recorded in the public records for deeds of the county in which the property is located, or on the real property that, as of December thirty first of the year preceding the tax year, he has care of as guardian, executor, or committee or may have the care of as guardian, executor, trustee, or committee.
SECTION 12-37-890. Place where property shall be returned for taxation.
All horses, neat cattle, mules, asses, sheep, hogs, dogs, wagons, carts and other vehicles used in any business, furniture and supplies used in hotels, restaurants and other houses of public resort, personal property used in or in connection with storehouses, manufacturing, warehouses or other places of business, all personal property on farms and merchants' and manufacturers' stock and capital shall be returned for taxation and taxed in the county, city and town in which it is situated. All bankers' capital and personal assets pertaining to their banking business shall be returned for taxation and taxed in the county, city or town in which the banking house is located. All shares of stock in incorporated banks located in this State shall be returned for taxation and taxed in the county, city or town in which the bank is located. All property of deceased persons shall be returned for taxation and taxed in the county where administration may be legally granted, until distribution thereof and payment may be made to the parties entitled thereto. All other personal property shall be returned for taxation and taxed at the place where the owner thereof shall reside at the time of listing the same, if the owner reside in this State; if not, at the residence of the person having it in charge. And all real estate shall be taxed in the county, city, ward or town where it is located. The owners of real property situate partly within and partly without any incorporated town or city shall list the part in the town or city separately from the part outside the incorporated limits thereof.
The South Carolina Code of Regulations Section 117-1740.2. Cadastral Maps and Parcel Identifiers.
Section 1: Scope
This regulation provides requirements for the development and maintenance of cadastral maps and parcel identifiers which will be used by the Assessors to locate, inventory and appraise all real property within their jurisdiction. A county may elect to develop and maintain a manual mapping system or a digital (automated) mapping system; however, each county shall have a system of maps that conform to the minimum standards contained herein.
Section 2: Definitions
A. Base maps locate the major physical features of the landscape and contain the fundamental information from which the cadastral maps are prepared. Base maps should be tied to the geodetic network, either by means of ground control surveys or satellite methods of surveying. Base maps provide the means to relate the locations of cadastral parcels to the geodetic reference framework. Base maps can be in the form of line maps (generated manually or by computer) or photographic maps. Regardless of the form, base maps are usually created from aerial photographs. Aerial photographs provide an efficient and economical means for preparing the base maps.
B. Cadastral maps, also known as tax maps, should be viewed as overlays to the base maps. There should be cadastral maps for the entire assessing jurisdiction, showing ownership, the size and position of each parcel in relation to other properties, bodies of water, roads, and other major geographic features. The maps should be produced at an appropriate scale and display all boundary lines, dimensions, or areas; identifying parcel numbers; and other pertinent legal and descriptive information. The maps provide a physical framework upon which non-physical parcel information can be displayed, such as assessment comparisons, land appraisals, and market or other statistical data.
C. A parcel of land, for the purposes of this regulation, is a contiguous area of land under one ownership. The parcel is the area of land that, as determined by the Assessor, should be included in the description for appraisal and assessment purposes after considering all legal and practical factors. Parcels may have been conveyed by one or more legal instruments, or created by survey, and may contain several lots or fractions of a lot. Each parcel represents one property record, which is one unit of land that is capable of being separately assessed.