You don’t build your reputation on what you SAY you are going to do, you build your reputation on what you have ACTUALLY done.
Jim Johnson - 26+ years experience in the Alameda County Assessor's office, the last 10 in administration as Division Chief.
Other candidates - No Assessor or County administration experience.
Candidate La - It says on Mr. La’s website that the Assessor job is to value property and determine the taxes that you pay according to that value. I know that we do NOT calculate taxes. That is the job of the Auditor’s office. I am not sure Mr. La knows what the Assessor really does. The job description has been on our office website for many years.
Jim Johnson - No conflicts of interest - I do not own property in Alameda County.
Candidate La - He has many commercial properties worth over $24 million and dozens of tenants in his shopping center empire. Large taxpayers such as Trader Joe’s, TJ Maxx, Petco, Michael’s, Mel’s Diner and Big Lots are tenants. He even owns a vineyard which is leased to Wente. He also purchased a rental home in 2010 that was in foreclosure thereby benefiting from the the recession.
Jim Johnson - 20+ years experience developing and improving new assessment systems with County IT. Working knowledge of every aspect of the office from ownership to mapping to exemptions to appraisal to business personal property.
Other candidates - No IT experience.
Jim Johnson - Our office provides over 500,000 assessments annually and provides proactive reduced assessments in downturn years. In one year, over 110,000 taxpayers received over $17 billion in reduced assessments which equates to over $170 million in property tax savings. We started reducing large quantities of properties in 2007 at the start of the recession with over 44,000 reductions. The next year 98,000, then 110,000, then 108,000, then another 108,000, then 92,000 and finally, 53,000 as we started coming out of the recession, all without the need to file an assessment appeal. We are fair and equitable in our assessments.
Candidate La - He has indicated he tried to assist about 50 taxpayers with their assessments and that we were slow to react to the recession.
Jim Johnson - Our office is mandated by law to perform 4 year audits on each of the largest assessed businesses within a 4 year cycle including Tesla.
Candidate La - If elected, wants to audit Tesla immediately based on political reasons, jeopardizing your tax dollars to potential legal action.
Jim Johnson - Our office is not allowed to provide the public legal opinions.
Candidate La - In the Voter Guide he states that he will bring the Assessor’s office to neighborhoods and provide real estate, financial and estate planning workshops, jeopardizing your tax dollars to potential legal action. He has also stated that he wants to help small business owners fill our their annual property statements, again, jeopardizing your tax dollars to potential legal action.