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Boreal Community Media

Community conversation with the Cook County assessor

Jan 03, 2020 10:29AM ● By Editor
Cook County Assessor Bob Thompson. Submitted photo

By Joe Friedrichs of WTIP Radio News - January 3, 2019

Now complete, 2019 proved to be a very busy year in the Cook County Assessor’s office. The new assessor, Bob Thompson, took his post in June. Waiting for Thompson on his first day as the new assessor was the pressing issue of federal funds the county would receive from the federal government for land located in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. It was assumed the county would lose federal funds in 2019 under what is known as the Thye-Blatnik Act, which are essentially payments made it lieu of taxes from the federal government to St. Louis, Lake and Cook counties here in northeastern Minnesota.

Furthermore, Thompson and the assessor’s office were busy navigating short-term rental tax classification following a May 21 memo from the Minnesota Department of Revenue. The memo told assessors across the state to determine ‘primary use’ of short-term rentals in their counties and class them accordingly for taxation purposes.

On top of these items, the assessor’s office continues to receive questions from local property owners about increases in property values and thus increases in local taxes.

WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs spoke with Thompson during a community conversation that aired Jan. 2.

Also included in the conversation is an interview with Jon Klockziem, the director of the property tax division for the Minnesota Department of Revenue. Klockziem and Friedrichs discuss what qualifications are required to become a county assessor and what their role is in county government.

To listen to the conversation, follow this link to the WTIP website.

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