Philly offers detailed — and complicated — explanation on AVI assessments

The Office of Property Assessment is expanding its explanation of how it arrived at the new assessments in Philadelphia. But it might take a mathematician to understand it.

Chief assessment officer Ritchie McKeithen says the extended explanation of the Actual Value Initiative assessment methodology will soon be on the OPA website.

“We are enhancing that by putting a 15-page detailed analysis of how the assessment process works and the actual formula that people have asked for: how our assessments are derived,” he said.

McKeithen says the office is working to address concerns by residents who don’t understand how their assessments changed so much.

“What I do caution people to understand is that assessments are very convoluted, detailed system of value and property,” he said. “And it takes years of training and understanding algorithms and things like that. So it’s very difficult for laymen to sit in their home and just derive their assessment.”

Residents with a question about a specific property can contact the OPA for an explanation, McKeithen said.

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