Years ago, a lister's job was seasonal and part-time. Listers would spend a few days, weeks or months out of the year collecting data on new and improved properties to produce and defend a grand list.
Since then, on-going legislation and taxation complexities have brought about many changes in Vermont. The lister's job has grown markedly. Today's role of lister includes daily tasks, extensive knowledge and training, and many more hours than ever before.
Becoming educated in listing practices and real estate knowledge is an important responsibility of a lister. We attend annual seminars that address legislative and software updates. We also attend classes and workshops that lead to becoming certified as a Vermont Property Assessor. VPA certification benefits the taxpayers and the Town.
A solid knowledge of the real estate market is crucial to the accuracy of the listers annual equalization study. The results of this study set Pownal's CLA (Common Level of Appraisal), education liability and tax rates for the upcoming year. CLA also ultimately affects our reappraisal status.
Listers may work on their own, or with approval of the town selectboard (for release of the funds), may employ assistance as necessary. This assistance may be in the form of a professional appraiser/assessor, a data entry person or some other combination.
In summary, the role of lister involves a wide range of knowledge, abilities, and skills. The listers assist the public, including but not limited to taxpayers, attorneys, insurance companies, title searchers and appraisers. It can be challenging, frustrating, detailed and difficult, but above all rewarding!
The above explanation is compiled from the Vermont Department of Taxes overview.