IowaAuditors.org

County Tax Process

Tax Rates

Per Iowa Code (Ch. 331.512), the auditor prepares the tax list and certifies levies to the treasurer. Each levying authority (e.g. county, cities, school districts, townships), determines its own tax rate based on the valuation report and budgetary needs as provided by the Code of Iowa.

Contact your county auditor for the latest version of a county’s levy rates.

How Taxes Are Calculated

Based on the budgets submitted by the various levying authorities, the auditor prepares and certifies the levy rates in the county. Budgets for each levying authority are based on its taxable valuation as well as levy limits established by the Code of Iowa. Levy rates are expressed in dollars and cents per $1,000 of taxable valuation.

Property taxes due during a fiscal year are based on the assessed property value as of January 1 of the preceding year, i.e. the assessments for January 1, 2007 will be the basis for the taxes paid in September of 2008 and March 2009.

For an overview and calendar of the property tax cycle, read the Iowa Department of Revenue’s Introduction to Iowa Property Tax.

For a detailed primer of local property tax, see the Iowa Legislative Services Agency Local Property Tax guide.