Assessment Appeals Board Protocol for Virtual Assessment Appeal Hearings
1. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and guidance from State and local public health officials to avoid in-person gatherings, beginning on Thursday, October 15, 2020, the AAB will be reconvening its assessment appeals hearings via Zoom, an online teleconferencing platform. A link to your scheduled Zoom hearing will be provided in the Notice of Hearing.
2. The Notice will also enclose an Agreement to Waive In-Person Assessment Appeal Hearing, which the AAB requires that all Applicants sign and return at least seven (7) days prior to your scheduled virtual hearing date. If you do not agree to waive an in-person hearing, your hearing date will be postponed until such time as in-person hearings may safely resume, following all State and local health official guidance. The Agreement should be mailed to:
County of San Mateo Assessment Appeals Board
400 County Center, BOS 104
Redwood City, CA 94063-1662
3. No later than two (2) business days prior to your hearing date, all parties must send an email to AAB@smcgov.org with the following information:
- Appeal number(s)
- Date of hearing
- Names of all persons participating in the hearing and their roles (e.g. “John Doe, Applicant”; “Jane Smith, Assessor”), and their email addresses
4. Document submission for evidentiary hearings: No later than two (2) business days prior to your hearing date, email a PDF copy of all documents that you intend to introduce at the hearing to AAB@smcgov.org. Pursuant to Property Tax Rule 313, the Clerk will distribute your documents to the other party, via email, at the commencement of your hearing. Day-of-hearing electronic submissions for rebuttal evidence will be permitted.
5. The Commissioners will be viewing your electronic documents on a secondary computer screen. Accordingly, the “screen sharing” function in Zoom will not be utilized, so as to preserve the ability to view participants via video throughout the hearing.
6. All participants must log in to the Zoom hearing at 9:15 a.m. on the scheduled hearing day. Please ensure that your displayed name matches the name previously provided to the AAB, so that you can be correctly identified by the Clerk.
7. When you first log in, you will initially be admitted to the hearing as an “Attendee” who can see and hear the proceedings, but not speak.
8. The Clerk will call each appeal hearing by number, and invite all participants for that hearing to use the “Raise Hand” button (located at the bottom of the screen) to identify themselves. At that time, you will be promoted to a “Panelist” and will be able to participate via video and audio.
9. Please keep your video on at all times during your hearing, but leave your microphone muted when not speaking, so as to reduce background noise and interruption. Follow the same etiquette requirements when appearing remotely as you would in person. Zoom hearings will be accessible to the public and will be recorded, so please conduct yourselves accordingly.
10. Other than when a witness or party is testifying, if you need to speak with your attorney, please let the Commissioners know, mute your audio, and then briefly call your attorney. No telephonic or text communications with attorneys will be permitted during live testimony.
11. When your hearing has concluded, please click on “Leave Meeting” to exit Zoom, unless you are also scheduled for another hearing that day. In that case, the Clerk will move you back to “Attendee” until your next appeal is called.
12. Please ensure that your Zoom software is updated to the current version, and that your video and audio are functioning prior to your hearing. If you are experiencing technical difficulties that prevent you from participating, please notify the Clerk by calling (650) 363-1959. While the AAB cannot provide technical support, you may request a postponement of your hearing to a later date due to difficulties in accessing the Zoom platform.
Should you have questions or need assistance on using the Zoom platform and its features, please review the video tutorials and trainings available here: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/206618765-Zoom-video-tutorials
The Assessment Appeals Board is committed to continuing public access to its hearings during the COVID-19 crisis. Due to public health concerns, the AAB must convene hearings remotely in order to eliminate the need for individuals to attend hearings in person. This reduces the number of visits by the public to the courthouse, thereby minimizing potential infection of the public and staff.
The AAB’s next scheduled virtual hearing date is:
- January 14, 2021 at 9:30 am
- Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device: Please click this URL to join: Webinar ID: 978 2892 2096