San Mateo County cities, schools and special districts will receive about $20 million less in 2010-11 because property values have decreased a second straight year, according to data released Thursday by the county assessor's office.

Assessor Warren Slocum blamed "depressed housing and commercial markets and a lagging local economy," and noted that in his 24-year tenure he has never seen a year-to-year decline in assessed property values.

The 2010-11 annual assessment roll reflects the assessed value of all properties in the county as of Jan. 1 after accounting for changes in property values from the previous year. 

The county's annual assessment roll decreased by 1.39 percent, or $2 billion, from the previous year, according to the data. A sizable portion of that loss came from businesses associated with San Francisco International Airport. 

About $1.3 billion of the $2 billion decrease stemmed from assessments of unsecured property, which includes commercial airline property and SFO's aviation and concession interests. Though unsecured property assessments make up only 5.5 percent of the net combined roll, they dropped in value by 14.28 percent.


Submitted by Jim Alex