Gwinnett Co. hires outside firm to handle car title appeals - Houston weather, traffic, news | FOX 26 | MyFoxHouston

Gwinnett Co. hires outside firm to handle car title appeals

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GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. -

The state's new car tax has one metro area county making plans for a surge in people challenging the state's assessment of their vehicle's value. Gwinnett County is hiring an outside firm to handle the appeals process.

Steve Pruitt, the chief appraiser for the Board of Tax Assessors in Gwinnett County says he doesn't have the staff to handle the number of appeals expected from people challenging what the state says their car is worth.

"I specifically did not have the staff to handle the additional workload and the tasks associated with the taxpayers coming in and filing these appeals," said Pruitt.

Pruitt asked the county commission to hire an outside firm to handle what he predicts will be between 3,000 and 5,000 appeals a year. That number that will likely be driven by person-to-person sales, which are being taxed for the first time.

"The person-to-person basis is going to be the hardest group of individuals to get in touch with and make sure that everyone understands the complexities of the new title ad valorem tax," Pruitt said.

Pruitt calls it an unfunded mandate that the county must now pay an outside firm $175,000 to handle.

Some taxpayers said they agreed with Pruitt.

"l just think it's another way of bleeding hardworking taxpayers out of their money," said Douglas Stephens.

But others say the one-time 6.5 percent tax on the value of their car is actually a good deal.

 "I'm done completely with taxes on my car. I've already paid it when I bought the car," said Betty Guzman.

Gwinnett County commissioners approved spending that $175,000 on Tuesday.

LMC, Inc. will receive $38 for each appeals case it handles.

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