Code of the District of Columbia

Chapter 6. Tax Assessor.


§ 47–601. Preparation of annual tax ledgers and statement of assessment and taxes.

The Assessor of the District of Columbia shall be charged with the duty of preparing the annual tax ledgers on a numerical system, which shall be finished or completed at such time as will allow preparation by him of tax bills for collection purposes. Upon the completion of the tax ledgers, said Assessor shall prepare a statement showing the total amount of the assessment of both real and personal property, and the total amount of taxes to be collected under said assessment; which statement shall be receipted by the Collector of Taxes in triplicate, and said Collector shall be held responsible under his bond for all such taxes, except such as he may not be able to collect after fully complying with the requirements of law. The original receipt of said assessment and taxes shall be forwarded by the Assessor to the General Accounting Office, the duplicate to the Auditor of the District of Columbia, and the triplicate shall be retained by the Collector.


(Mar. 31, 1892, 27 Stat. 13, ch. 30; June 10, 1921, 42 Stat. 24, ch. 18, § 304; July 3, 1926, 44 Stat. 834, ch. 759, § 8; enacted, Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-254, § 2, 44 DCR 1575.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 47-601.

1973 Ed., § 47-601.

Cross References

Assessor of taxes, enrolled militia list, duty to create, see § 49-403.

Competency of witnesses, assessment officials as expert witnesses in condemnation proceedings, see § 14

Editor's Notes

Office of Assessor abolished: See Historical and Statutory Notes following § 47-413.

Office of Collector of Taxes abolished: See Historical and Statutory Notes following § 47-401.


§ 47–602. Power to administer oaths or affirmations and summon witnesses; examination of witnesses.

The Assessor of the District of Columbia and each member of said Board of Assistant Assessors in the discharge of any of the duties devolved upon him or them, or the Board of Real Property Assessments and Appeals, may administer all necessary oaths or affirmations. The Assessor of the District of Columbia, or in his absence the temporary chairman of said Board, shall have power to summon the attendance of any person before said Board to be examined under oath touching such matters and things as the Board of Assistant Assessors or the said Board of Real Property Assessments and Appeals may deem advisable in the discharge of their duties; and any member of the Metropolitan Police force of the District of Columbia may serve subpoenas in his behalf. Such fees shall be allowed witnesses so examined, to be paid out of the contingent fund of the Mayor of the District of Columbia, as are allowed in civil actions before the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. Any person summoned and examined as aforesaid who shall knowingly make false oath or affirmation shall be guilty of perjury, and upon conviction thereof be punished according to the laws in force for the punishment of perjury.


(Aug. 14, 1894, 28 Stat. 285, ch. 287, § 13; June 25, 1936, 49 Stat. 1921, ch. 804; June 25, 1948, 62 Stat. 991, ch. 646, § 32(b); May 24, 1949, 63 Stat. 107, ch. 139, § 127; July 29, 1970, 84 Stat. 573, Pub. L. 91-358, title I,§ 155(c)(45); Mar. 17, 1993, D.C. Law 9-241, § 4, 40 DCR 629; enacted, Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-254, § 2, 44 DCR 1575; Apr. 8, 2011, D.C. Law 18-363, § 3(g)(1), 58 DCR 963.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 47-602.

1973 Ed., § 47-606.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 47-828.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 18-363 substituted “Real Property Tax Appeals Commission for the District of Columbia” for “Board of Real Property Assessments and Appeals”.

Cross References

Board of real property assessments and appeals, establishment and functions, see § 47-825.01.

Real property assessment and tax, violations of assessment provisions, see § 47-828.

Financial institutions, subject to applicable real property tax provisions, see § 47-2514.

Editor's Notes

Board of Assistant Assessors abolished: The Board of Assistant Assessors was abolished and the functions thereof transferred to the Board of Commissioners of the District of Columbia by Reorganization Plan No. 5 of 1952. The executive functions of the Board of Commissioners were transferred to the Commissioner of the District of Columbia by § 401 of Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1967. All functions of the Office of the Assessor and of the Board of Assistant Assessors, including the functions of all officers, employees and subordinate agencies were transferred to the Department of General Administration by Reorganization Order No. 3 of the Board of Commissioners, dated August 28, 1952. Reorganization Order No. 20 dated November 10, 1952, abolished the Office of Assessor and the Board of Assistant Assessors and transferred their functions to the Finance Office in the Department of General Administration. The same Order established in the Finance Office an Office of the Assessor headed by an Assessor, and established under the Assessor a Board of Assistant Assessors (Real Estate), a Board of Personal Tax Appraisers, and a Board of Equalization and Review. Reorganization Order No. 20 was superseded and replaced, and the Offices and Boards established thereby were abolished, by Organization Order No. 121, dated December 12, 1957. This Order continued the Finance Office, under the Department of General Administration, composed of the Office of the Finance Officer, Property Tax Division, Revenue Division, Treasury Division, Accounting Division, and Data Processing Division, and also established a Board of Equalization and Review. Organization Order No. 121 was revoked by Organization Order No. 3, dated December 13, 1967, Part IVC of which prescribed the functions of the Finance Office within the newly established Department of General Administration and also established a Board of Equalization and Review in the Finance Office, composed of the Finance Officer as Chairman, and 2 or more qualified persons who are conversant with real estate values in the District of Columbia, to be designated by the Finance Officer with the approval of the Director of General Administration. Under the provisions of the Order, the Board of Equalization and Review was empowered to review and equalize real estate assessments, hear complaints against real estate assessments and take appropriate action, and to transmit equalized assessments to the Commissioner for approval. Functions of the Finance Office as stated in Part IVC of Organization Order No. 3 were transferred to the Director of the Department of Finance and Revenue by Commissioner’s Order No. 69-96, dated March 7, 1969. The latter Order also provided that the Director of the Department of Finance and Revenue serve on the Board of Equalization and Review (now the Board of Real Property Assessments and Appeals).

Office of Assessor abolished: See Historical and Statutory Notes following § 47-413.

Applicability of D.C. Law 18-363: Section 3a of D.C. Law 18-363, as added by D.C. Law 19-155, § 4, provided: “Sec. 3a. Applicability; transition.

“(a) Sections 2 and 3 shall apply upon Council approval and appointment by the Mayor of a full-time Chairperson and a full-time Vice Chairperson to the Real Property Tax Appeals Commission for the District of Columbia.

“(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, the Mayor shall appoint the members of the Real Property Tax Appeals Commission for the District of Columbia with the advice and consent of the Council in accordance with the provisions of section 2(b)(3).”