Citing a potential loss in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, two Los Angeles City Councilmen Tuesday called for new assessments of properties that may have had their values lowered inappropriately by the Los Angeles County Assessor's Office, which is the .
Dennis Zine and Paul Krekorian co-sponsored a motion asking the county Board of Supervisors to order a re-assessment of properties that received a 20 percent or greater reduction in their property taxes since December 2010. The councilmen also urged L.A. County Assessor John Noguez to temporarily step aside during the investigation.
A former appraiser with the Assessor's Office was arrested Monday for allegedly falsifying documents and lowering property values by about $172 million in exchange for campaign contributions by property owners to Noguez.
According to the District Attorney's Office, Scott Schenter, 49, was charged last week with 60 felony counts—30 counts of falsifying accounts and 30 counts of falsifying records. He was arrested in Beaverton, OR, and was being held in lieu of $1.5 million bail.
Schenter worked for the Assessor's Office from 1988 to 2011 and allegedly slashed the values—and as a result the property tax bills—of multimillion-dollar homes, condominiums and businesses in Beverly Hills, Brentwood and Pacific Palisades, according to prosecutors. He allegedly secured political contributions for Noguez from the affected home and business owners.