The Real Property System (RPS) assessment administration software is a shared service between the County and local municipalities. While the County's Real Property Tax Service Agency and Office of Central and Information Services hosts, maintains and administers the system, local assessors maintain data within the system including assessments, exemptions, special district information, and mailing addresses. By maintaining a centralized assessment software system, Dutchess County relieves local assessors from database administration duties, thereby allowing them to concentrate on their duties of valuation and assessment administration.
This centralized system also allows for the County to calculate tax rates in a more timely fashion. Data from the system is used by County and Town finance and planning departments, school districts, libraries, fire, water, sewer, light and other districts, and is ultimately used to produce your tax bills. Though not required by law, most special districts are billed along with your County and Town taxes. It is far more efficient for the districts, and convenient for the taxpayer, to mail a single bill rather than several.
The Real Property System is also the source of data for the County’s freely-available online application, ParcelAccess. ParcelAccess is used by individuals, assessors, county and town planning departments, and many local private businesses such as attorneys, mortgage companies, banks, real estate agents, and insurance agents.
Tax maps are another shared service that Real Property Tax Services provides to Dutchess County assessors. In some areas, tax maps are maintained by the municipality, rather than centrally, as in Dutchess County. Tax maps are also critically important to the ParcelAccess application, and are used by many individuals, town and county departments.
Real Property Tax Services also performs mandated assessment data transmittals to Albany, (approximately 14 per year) saving the towns the time and effort of individually sending 308 different files. This is also more efficient for the recipient agency in Albany. In addition to administering the software, Real Property Tax Services also performs data entry when property ownership is transferred. This has proven timelier, more accurate, and more efficient than having the individual towns perform this work. The production of assessment rolls, tax rolls, tax bills, change of assessment notices, and other assessment-related documents (again, a combined effort of OCIS, RPT, and the local assessors) by the County is also far more efficient and cost-effective than individual towns processing and printing their own, or than having a private vendor perform these tasks.