Photo of battery pallet via Wikimedia Commons.

County Assessor Jeffrey Prang said Monday he will review the values of properties affected by lead and other contamination from the Exide battery recycling plant in Vernon to see if any tax relief could be offered to their owners.

“I have deep concern for those affected by Exide’s contamination of their property,” Prang said. “It is my responsibility to ensure all properties are fairly assessed and provide tax relief when warranted. Consequently, I have ordered my office to identify any and all avenues to help property owners during this difficult time.”

Affected properties are thought to be in Boyle Heights, Vernon, Maywood, Huntington Park, Commerce and other areas.

Property and business owners typically need to fill out a form to request such a review, but Prang’s office will go ahead and pull up the assessment records to take another look, according to Prang spokesman Michael Kapp.

The decline-in-value review looks at whether a property’s current market value is less than the assessed value as of Jan. 1 of the previous year.

Any tax relief would not affect this year’s tax bill, but may affect a future bill, Kapp said. There is also a possibility that depending on when the property was purchased, the decline in value may not be enough to result in a lower tax bill, he said.

Property owners with questions about the review can call the assessor’s office at (626) 258-6001.

— Wire reports 

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