Rodoni for County Assessor–Support Letter for Rodoni
The following letter was sent to me by long time friend, Robert Zigler. He gave me permission to publish it.
I have concerns about Jon Brooks if he is elected County Assessor. Actions speak louder than words. He was an expert witness for an opposing party in a case I had that involved appraising approximately 920 acres of ocean front property near Petrolia. To arrive at a market analysis in his restricted appraisal, he used as a comparable sale, among others, a 324 acre parcel located approximately 20 miles south of Fort Bragg to come up with an opinion of value that was 74% higher than the opinion of value made by two local appraisers with a combined 70 years of experience who specialize in agriculture, ranch, dairy, farm and timber land. As many of you know, the value of real property in the Fort Bragg area has no rational comparison to Petrolia property whatsoever. It is an entirely different market. Fort Bragg caters to the weekend warrior looking for a recreational estate an easy 3 hour drive from the Bay Area. If I were a rancher or an owner of acreage, I would be concerned. The case was filed in Santa Clara County and Mr. Brooks was hired to prepare an appraisal for a client who would benefit by a high appraisal. Perhaps Mr. Brooks thought he could slip this one by a Santa Clara County judge, after all, the land would seem cheap compared to Bay Area prices. But Petrolia is neither Fort Bragg, nor San Jose. It demonstrated to me that, as a paid expert witness in a civil suit, he will apply the standards set forth in §11319 of the California Business and Professions Code, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice Rule 2-2 (c), and the rules and regulations promulgated by the California Director of the Office of Real Estate Appraisers, in such a way as to support a higher appraisal when expedient. I know that governmental agencies are hurting for money. To what extent will a county assessor go and to what means will he or she use to achieve the desired result? I got my answer from Mr. Brooks. I don’t know a lot about Mari Wilson, but as Assistant County Assessor, all I can say is that I have had clients complain to me that the county assessed their property at higher values than those arrived at in the market by arms length, good faith negotiations. Again, I know the county needs money, but the status quo will not cut it if they are going to make up their own opinion of value and ignore the very definition of fair market value. I support Johanna Rodoni for Assessor.
Robert A. Zigler
Attorney at Law
Fortuna, CA 95540