Fresno County comprises the backbone of the Central Valley farm industry, so increases on agricultural property taxes would logically raise concerns and protests from residents. But a grand jury report has found that recent increases in the tax rolls was appropriate, accurate, and timely.

Because of the Williamson Act, taxes on agricultural property are based on income potential and not market value. Recent years have seen the value of the Central Valley’s staple crops increase dramatically, while tax rolls have remained relatively stagnant.

But two years ago, Assessor Paul Dictos was elected and promised to revise the tax rolls. Last year, thousands of property owners and farmers in Fresno County received increased tax bills, with average increases of about 23 percent. Next year, taxes are expected to increase again, bringing the total increase to about 59 percent.

Read the full article at the Fresno Bee.