Property Value Growth in School District Surpasses Expectations


The assessed value of property within the Hermiston School District grew by 6.19 percent over the prior year, according to the Umatilla County Assessor’s Office.

That growth yielded a 3.60 average growth rate over the past 10 years. Last year’s growth is more than double the 3.0 percent annual rate the district budgets for bond repayment and operations.

As the assessed value in a taxing district increases, each individual property owner pays a lower tax rate on bond debt because the cost is spread among more properties. The new rate, which is equal to a reduction of about $43.35 for a property with an assessed value of $250,000, was reflected on property tax statements sent out this fall.

“I am extremely proud that, by working closely with our bond financial partners as well as local and county officials during our annual budget and planning processes, we have been able to manage the district’s tax rate over recent years, while still being able to meet our financial obligations and build beautiful new schools that support our community,” said Director of Business Services Katie Saul.

Many properties in Umatilla County experienced an assessed value increase of 3 percent (the Oregon Constitution limit) unless changes were made to the property, such as the addition of a new structure or improvement of an existing structure, subdivision, or partition of the property. Even with the 3 percent assessed value increase, local homeowners saw a net savings of about 2 percent from the prior year on their district bond rate. As an example, a property with a $250,000 assessed value in 2021 is now valued at $257,500; thus, the actual savings on the bond line item for the property owner is about $18.30 for the year.

“The district takes a conservative approach to budgeting; so, we can be confident in the resources we expect to have,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tricia Mooney. “We must be mindful of the delicate balance of budgeting and the potential ramifications of more aggressive budget assumptions.”