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MAAO 2019 Summer Conference
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MAAO 2019 Summer Conference

MAAO Summer Conference, June 18-21, 2019. Topics to include: Managing Your Brain on Conflict; How to avoid the ATB and What to Do if You Can’t; Lincoln Institute 101; Utility Market Value Update; and Recent ATB Tax Exemption Decisions; Outsourcing Data Collection for Cyclical Recollection and Permits; First Amendment Rights and Office Safety; and an Update from the DLS. Cancellation Policy: must notify MAAO via email to by June 10th in order to receive a refund.

6/18/2019 to 6/21/2019
When: MAAO Summer Conference
6/18-21, 2019
Where: Red Jacket Beach Resort
1 South Shore Drive
South Yarmouth, Massachusetts  02664
United States
Contact: Christine Purple

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MAAO 2019 Summer Conference
Education Program

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Cancellation Policy: must notify MAAO via email to  or by June 10th in order to receive a refund.

Tuesday, June 18th

Morning Sessions
10:00 am – 12:30 pm  (2.5 recertification credits)

10:00 am      Lincoln Institute 101/ Utility Market Value Update
The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy is a valuable resource for assessors.  In this session Ron Rakow, a Fellow at the Lincoln Institute in Cambridge, MA, will demonstrate how to use tools such as the Place Database and Significant Features of the Property Tax, as well as highlight some of the property tax policy reports available on the Lincoln Institute Web site.  As well, Ron will discuss the Appeals Court recently affirmed the ATB decision in Boston v. NStar Electric.  This is the most recent case that indicates that assessments based solely on net book value may no longer reflect the market value of utility property.  Ron Rakow will discuss the theory of net book and the impact of DPU decisions on the market values on utility property, provide a recap of relevant court decisions and describe the valuation method employed in the ATB decisions for these utility cases.
Speakers: Ronald Rakow, Fellow, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy & Principal, Muddy River Advisors, LLC

11:30 am     Recent ATB Tax Exemption Decisions
The ATB has issued several decisions in the past year concerning the scope of the Clause Third property tax exemption.  The fact that 2 of the ATB decisions were not unanimous underscores the difficult judgments confronting Assessors. This program will discuss the factors the ATB considered to be important, and less than important.  The cases to be considered include: a) Atlantic Union College v. Assessors of Lancaster (October 12, 2018) (4-1 decision); b) American Youth Hostels, Inc. v. Assessors of West Tisbury  (May 29, 2018) (3-2 decision); c) Wayland Rod & Gun Club, Inc. v. Assessors of Wayland  (September 13, 2018); d) Trimount Foundation, Inc. v. Assessors of Newton (January 16, 2019) (appeal filed); and, e)Thomas Jefferson Memorial Center at Coolidge Point, Inc. v. Assessors of Manchester-by-the-Sea  (March 29, 2018).
Speaker: Anthony M. Ambriano, Esq, Sassoon & Cymrot, LLP

12:30 pm     Lunch on Your Own
Afternoon Session
1:30 pm -4:30 pm (2 recertification credits)

1:30 pm       First Amendment Rights and Office Safety
Are you ready for an unannounced “First Amendment Audit” visit to your community, with somebody filming in your halls and into your offices and asking lots of questions? At least two assessing departments in the state have had recent visits. Do you know how to respond and that your rights are different than those of the public who are in your building at the time? Are you aware of and confident in the level of safety in your workplace? We are excited to have the award-winning Yarmouth Police Department here to help us learn the law and how to respond appropriately to these situations!
Speaker:  Steven G. Xiarhos, Deputy Chief, Town of Yarmouth

3:30 pm       MAAO Annual Meeting
MAAO Annual Meeting including annual committee reports and awards.
Moderator: William B. Mitchell, MAA, RMA, Chief Assessor, Leominster & MAAO President
Wednesday, June 19th
Morning Sessions

8:30 am – 12:00 Noon (3.5 recertification credits)

8:30 am        MAAO Legislative Update
You will receive an update on the MAAOs Legislative Agenda
Speaker: Lane Partridge, MAA, Town Assessor & Chair, MAAO Legislative Committee
9:00 am       IAAO Update
 You will receive an update on IAAO activities including the IAAO Conference Boston 2020.
Speaker: Tim Boncoskey, Chief Deputy Assessor, Maricopa County & IAAO President
9:30 am       “County Feud”
And the survey says…. In Family Feud fashion we will be holding a “County Feud”. The two Counties with the best participation in the survey will be up against each other to determine who knows Massachusetts Assessing the best.  The Audience will be encouraged to participate with an interactive app. The Survey will be distributed via email beginning on April 22nd and the deadline to submit responses is May 31st.

10:30 am      Outsourcing Data Collection for Cyclical Recollection and Permits - Soup to Nuts and Beyond - City of Quincy's Experience
The City of Quincy has been working to improve their data collection for the cyclical recollection and permits by utilizing an outside vendor.  This outsourcing has enabled the City  focus on timely collections, improve their customer service and quality control of the data import into the CAMA system. Coming hear about this experience from soup to nuts and beyond, including their trials and errors.
Speakers: Colleen Healy, MAA, Chair, Board of Assessors, City of Quincy & Michael Flynn, MAA, Commercial Assessor, City of Quincy
12:00 noon   Lunch – ticketed.
Afternoon Session
1:30 pm – 4:30 pm (3 recertification credits)

1:30 pm       The Latest from Local Services
What is new at the Division of Local Services for 2019.
Speakers: Sean Cronin, Senior Deputy Commissioner, DLS; Joanne Graziano, Chief, Bureau of Local Assessments; Patricia Hunt, Chief Bureau of Municipal Finance Law; Kristen Shirer, Director of IT, DLS  

Thursday, June 20th
Morning Sessions

8:00 am – 12:00 Noon (up to 3 hours of recertification credit)

6:30 am       Buffet Breakfast in the Red Jacket Dining Room (6:30 am – 10:30 am) Sponsored by The Warren Group – casual dining in the RJB dining room
8:00 am       Vendor Exposition (8:00 am - 11:30 am)
Come visit the vendors in Wheelhouse 1 & 2.  All attendees that completes a card will be entered to win a prize
9:00 am       Vendor Demonstrations (9:00 am - 12:00 noon)
Come join Vendors as they present their products.  There will be credit offered for each ½ hour demonstration. List of Vendors Demonstrations will be distributed to all attendees prior to the conference.
12 noon  Lunch on your own
Afternoon Session
1:30 pm – 4:30 pm (3 recertification credits)

1:30 pm       Managing Your Brain on Conflict: Awareness, Communication, and Resolution Skills
Do you know how to notice the signs of conflict rising? Do you know where conflict comes from in your environment? Do you know what to say to prevent conflict or resolve it once it thunders into your work? In this session we will discuss what happens to our brain when conflict happens and how to recognize communication tendencies in others that create tension. Once participants can discern the context, emotions, and motivations of conflict, proven communication skills can help prevent conflict in the first place. When even the best communication fails, the right resolution strategy can restart relationships, teams, and initiatives. As result of this training you will be able to: Recognize what your brain does in the heat of conflict; Identify your and others communication tendencies and reactive responses to conflict; Apply communication techniques that prevent conflict; Employ five strategies for conflict resolution
Speaker: Jon Wortmann, Executive and Mental Coach, Trainer, and Speaker
Friday, June 21st 
Morning Sessions
9:30 am – 12:00 Noon (up to 2.5 hours of recertification credit)

9:30 am       How to avoid the ATB and What to Do if you Can’t
Come and hear what Commissioner Steve Elliott has observed in his first year as Commissioner at the ATB.  He’ll be providing insights and comments about the workings of the ATB and the performances of Appellants, Appellees,  Attorneys and Expert Witnesses.
Speaker: Steven G. Elliott, Commissioner, Appellate Tax Board