Los Angeles County Assessor Jeff Prang certified the 2021 Assessment Roll, reflecting economic growth for the 11th consecutive year with an increase in the assessed value of taxable property countywide.

The 2021 Assessment Roll (Roll) grew by $62.9 billion (or 3.7%) over the prior year to $1.76 trillion in total net value. While this overall value indicates growth, the total also reflects a reduction of $5.5 billion in business personal property, which includes machinery, equipment, boats and aircraft.

The reduction reflects the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the local economy. To recognize the impact specifically on small businesses, about 73,000 personal property assessments were proactively reduced in the hardest-hit areas.

Other examples include commercial aircraft as air travel was severely restricted, resulting in reduced aircraft assessments. Additionally, daily commuting and other travel declined due to stay-at-home orders, resulting in reduced fuel demand, which in turn led to reduced fuel prices.

Consequently, several major refineries saw a decrease in net cash flow and a commensurate reduction in fixture value.

The $1.76 trillion total net value translates into about $17 billion in property tax dollars that will be allocated to vital public services such as public education, first responders, and public health, as well as other County, municipal and public education services.

“I am pleased to report that the 3.7% increase in assessed property values in Los Angeles County represents the 11th year of consecutive growth,” Assessor Prang said. “We continue to improve our ability to produce a fair, accurate, and timely Assessment Roll, which is aided in large measure by new, enhanced technology.”The Roll is the inventory for all taxable property in the County and, as such, provides some insight into the health of the real estate market. Assessments are based on the value of property as of the lien date of January 1, 2021.

The Roll is also driven in large measure by real property sales, which added $44.9 billion to the Roll; the CPI adjustment mandated by Prop. 13, adding an additional $16.4 billion; and new construction added $8.8 billion.

“Although the 2021 Assessment Roll reflects growth, which is good news, other factors are now indicating the exact nature of the economic slow-down caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Assessor Prang said. “The mixed implications of this past year will be felt for some time to come. Just as an example, the housing market experienced robust growth during the pandemic while small businesses were hit hard along with hotels, refineries, and airlines.”

COVID-19 also presented unanticipated obstacles to produce this year’s 2021 Roll, especially with the closure of County facilities to the public. However, Assessor staff adapted well to teleworking protocols while remaining “Safer at Home.”

“Most of my 1,300 employees were teleworking while county facilities were closed to the public,” Assessor Prang said. “This past year has been beyond a challenge but we pulled together and have produced a thorough, accurate, and fair Roll in a timely manner.”

Assessor Prang also reminded residents that the growth does not mean property owners will be subject to a corresponding increase on their annual property tax bills. Nearly 9 out of 10 property owners will see only the modest 1.036% adjustment prescribed by Proposition 13.

The 2021 Assessment Roll comprises 2.58 million real estate parcels and business assessments, including 1,885,579 single-family homes, 250,190 apartment complexes, 248,293 commercial and industrial properties, and more than 161,488 business property assessments.

Submitted by Steve Whitmore, Assessor PIO