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Town Manager: West Hartford Grand List Has ‘Healthy’ Increase

West Hartford Town Hall. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

West Hartford’s 2017 Grand List, which reflects the value of real property, business personal property, and motor vehicles, increased 0.778 percent over the previous year.

By Ronni Newton

The 2017 Grand List submitted to Town Manager Matt Hart on Wednesday by Director of Assessments Joseph Dakers shows a significant increase in personal property, and increases in real property and motor vehicle values as well.

“It’s healthy for a year like this,” Hart said. “It’s good, healthy growth in a year that does not have revaluation,” he said, and at a time when the economy is still recovering from recession.

According to Dakers, the total value of West Hartford’s 2017 Grand List is now $6,288,939,631. The total increase is $48,527,170, or 0.778 percent above last year’s list.

The submitted Grand List reflects values as of Oct. 1, 2017, and does not reflect any revisions which may be made by the Board of Assessment Appeals.

The increase in the Real Property list is $27,026,725 or 0.48 percent.

“The Delamar Hotel is now in our top 10,” Hart said.

Other projects that have been added to the tax rolls and account for the increase include the new Chick-fil-A restaurant on New Park Avenue, the completed portion of the 616 New Park Avenue building, apartments on North Main Street, and the building at 1 Abrahms Boulevard is now owned by Hebrew Center for Health and Rehabilitation, which is a for-profit operation and thereby taxable.

The Motor Vehicle list increased by $7,037,645, or 0.29%. The total number of vehicles registered in West Hartford grew by just 105, to a total of 47,319.

The largest contributor to overall Grand List growth this year was on the Personal Property list, Hart said. The increase was 8.0 percent, or $14,462,800.

“There are 70 new businesses, plus investments that people have made in capital equipment,” Hart said.

Hart said that the growth of 0.778 percent, in terms of percentage as well as in actual dollars, is the “largest since 2009, other than in revaluation years.”

He said that growth in 2011, which was a revaluation year, was 17 percent. The Grand List grew by 0.23 percent in 2012, 0.59 in 2013, 0.31 in 2014, and 0.58 in 2015. Last year, which was a revaluation year, the increase was 4.33 percent.

“It shows that the town remains an attractive place for investment,” Hart said of the increase.

Blue Back Square, which is valued at $79,794,290, is West Hartford’s top overall taxpayer for 2016, followed by Westfarms (valued at $52,150,000) and Corbin’s Corner (valued at $42,378,420). The remaining top taxpayers are CL&P (now Eversource), Town Center West Associates (29 South Main St.), McCauley Center Incorporated, BFN Westgate LLC (1248 Farmington Ave.), E & A Northeast Limited Partnership (333 North Main St.), and Bishop’s Corner (E&A) LLC (2523 Albany Ave.), and Prospect Plaza Improvements LLC (245 Prospect Ave.). On the top 10 list for the first time, in 10th place, is Delamar West Hartford LLC which is valued at $17,926,510.

On the top Real Property list, Steele Road LLC and Delamar West Hartford LLC now appear with buildings valued in 2017 at $19,575,290 and $17,926,510 respectively.

Delamar is also among the top 10 on the Personal Property list. Big Y and Whole Foods, as well as Wiremold, also appear on this list. The top two entities on the Personal Property list are CL&P/Eversource and Connecticut Natural Gas.

The Grand List is just one component of the town’s budget – the first step in the process of determining the mill rate for the upcoming fiscal year. The current mill rate is 41.04 for real and personal property, and 37.0 for motor vehicles.

“I think it will be an offset, but we are just starting the budget process,” Hart said. The governor is scheduled to propose the state budget next week.

West Hartford’s budget for 2018-2019 will be submitted to the Town Council on March 12, 2018, and adopted on April 24, 2018.

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Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Hebrew Senior Care had become for-profit. The article has been changed to indicate that the building at 1 Abrahms Boulevard is now owned by Hebrew Center for Health and Rehabilitation, which is a for-profit entity that runs the skilled nursing services. The building is still occupied by the non-profit Hebrew Senior Care.

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