Ernie Thompson Announces Candidacy for Yuba County Assessor

Twenty-Year Assessor's Office Veteran Will Focus On Education and Advocacy

Wheatland, CA– With twenty years of experience in the Assessor’s Office, 47-year-old Wheatland resident, Ernie Thompson, has announced his candidacy for Yuba County Assessor in 2018.

“The people entrust the Assessor with the duty to carry out their will in the assessment of taxable property.  They need an Assessor who will educate them on the law, apply the law equitably, and also act as an advocate by pointing out inequities within the law when discovered.” 

Ernie’s career as an appraiser in the Assessor’s Office started in 1995 with Yuba County.  His journey includes over 9 years with Yuba County and 8 years with Sutter County.  The last two and a half years he has been the Chief Appraiser for Nevada County where he manages the 12-member valuation division.  He has an Advanced Appraisal Certificate with the California State Board of Equalization that includes the Auditor-Appraiser Designation, and from 2005 to 2009 he held a Certified General Appraisal License with the California Bureau of Real Estate Appraisers. 

“I have worked for three different Assessor’s Offices over the last 20 years each one with a different approach to processing the workload.  This has given me the opportunity to appraise every type of property, gain an extensive knowledge of the California Revenue and Taxation Code, and serve under the leadership of 5 different Assessors.  I have learned invaluable leadership lessons from each of them.  I know appraisal, the law, and what it takes to lead the Assessor’s Office.”

Ernie is endorsed by Nevada County Assessor Sue Horne, several Assessor’s Office staff members, as well as business, farm and community leaders.

“It has been a true pleasure to work with Ernie.  He has a strong work ethic as well as excellent appraisal and management skills.  Yuba County would be well served to have Ernie Thompson as their next Assessor.  Ernie has a compassionate yet fair approach in serving taxpayers and administering California’s property tax laws.”  Nevada County Assessor Sue Horne.

Ernie is a 1988 Graduate of Wheatland High School.  He earned an Associate’s Degree form Yuba College in Business Administration and a Bachelor’s Degree from Sonoma State University in Business Management.

The Yuba Sutter area has been Ernie’s home for 47 years.  He has grown up, attended school, worked, and raised a family here.  Over the years, he has served two terms as City Councilman for the City of Wheatland, coached numerous youth sports teams, volunteered time for several community organizations, and been an active leader in his church.  “It would be a privilege to serve and represent the citizens of Yuba County as their Assessor.”


Posted on 01 Dec 2017, 10:23 - Category: News

No Property Tax Relief in Sight for Some Homeowners

The following is an editorial that I wrote for the Cal Tax Newsletter.  It is my opinion and does not necessarily reflect the views of Cal Tax.

The passage of Proposition 13 promised California property owners limited, reasonable and predictable property taxes. However, those promises will be unrealized for thousands who purchased homes during the most recent housing bubble.

April 24, 2015
By Ernie Thompson,
Sutter County Real Property Appraiser

These are families who have stayed in their homes and honored their commitments. They have fought, reworked loans, and made sacrifices in order to do so. Ironically, if those same families would have walked away from their homes, through foreclosure or short sale, and subsequently purchased another home, they now would have lower assessments and the protections of Proposition 13. Instead, they will continue to see increasing tax bills for years to come. Why?

Under Proposition 13, when property transfers ownership, it is reappraised for property tax purposes at its fair market value. This value becomes the base value, which then is adjusted each year by 2 percent. The Proposition 13 value sets the ceiling for the assessed value of a property owner.

Where the Proposition 13 value rises higher than the property's market value, a temporary reduction to the assessed value can be made under Proposition 8, the 1978 voter-approved measure that requires the assessor to enroll the lesser of either the Proposition 13 value or market value. These two values are compared each year until the market value once again exceeds the Proposition 13 value ceiling. The temporary reduction does not establish a new base value.

More than 3 million property owners statewide received this Proposition 8 reduction after the recent market crash.

Therein lies the problem. Properties purchased during the bubble have extremely high base values, because they were purchased during an artificially high market. Additionally, their base values now have been indexed up for several years. Even with the housing market recovery over the past couple years, many have a market value that is only at approximately 60 percent of their Proposition 13 value as of January 1, 2015. They could see their property tax bill almost double over the next decade as the market continues to increase.

In reality, these property owners have no Proposition 13 ceiling protection. At the same time, property owners who bought before and after the bubble typically are benefitting from the Proposition 13 protection, because their base value is significantly lower. Therefore, their Proposition 13 ceiling is well under the market value today.
Views and opinions expressed in CalTaxletter guest commentaries are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the California Taxpayers Association.

Now that the housing market is recovering, assessments on these owners are increasing. Many have seen 10 percent to 25 percent increases annually, because while on Proposition 8, they do not have the 2 percent limitation. The value can fluctuate with the market, year to year, as long as it remains under the Proposition 13 ceiling.


Posted on 24 Apr 2015, 15:47 - Category: News

Homes may see tax hikes

Thousands of Yuba-Sutter homeowners are still feeling the effects of the collapse of the housing market, and it's coming in the form of increasing property taxes.

Posted: Friday, April 10, 2015
By Andrew Creasey

Read Full Article

For those who bought homes at the peak of an artificially inflated housing market, roughly from 2005-07, the property tax shelter created by Proposition 13, which caps property tax inflation at 2 percent in most cases, is almost nonexistent.

Posted on 10 Apr 2015, 15:43 - Category: News

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