Claude Parrish was sworn in on January 5, 2015, as the elected Assessor of Orange County, where he has committed to serve the public by valuing assessable property with fairness and impartiality. As part of his commitment to help taxpayers, he has expanded the public office hours for the public from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. to 5 p.m. He has an open-door policy and routinely takes calls from and conducts meetings with taxpayers, small business owners, and other constituents in his office. As Assessor, he has eliminated waste and instituted taxpayer-friendly policies:
With existing staff, on August 11, 2015, a Taxpayer Advocate Office was created to assist taxpayers. In effect, “a public defender for the taxpayer.”
Services were brought to south Orange County in Mission Viejo on September 27, 2016, with an Assessor Public Service Office (there were none before), located in existing government space at no additional rent expense, staffed with existing employees who live near the satellite location to serve taxpayers.
The property tax appeals period was extended from September 15th to November 30th.
Allowed taxpayers of Orange County all of the lawful exemptions they are qualified for and entitled to. On January 27, 2015 in his first month in office, the first non-profit assisted was WisePlace, a homeless shelter for women.
The Preliminary Change of Ownership forms were highlighted with the most important paragraph on the form to include the colors green, yellow and red so that taxpayers will not miss important deadlines and items, which helps taxpayers avoid penalties (up to $5,000 or $20,000).
And many other ongoing issues, such as simplification of forms.
Claude Parrish is a past Los Angeles County Insurance Commissioner. Prior to his work in Orange County, he was elected to the State Board of Equalization, Third District in 1998, where he served as both its Vice Chairman and Chairman as well as a member of the Franchise Tax Board, where he instituted a taxpayer-friendly approach to serve the eight million residents of his district from 1999 to 2007. At the Board of Equalization, he also chaired the Customer Services Committee and implemented a new 800-telephone line able to answer more complex tax problems for tax professionals. Additionally, at the Board of Equalization, he chaired the powerful Property Tax Committee which is responsible for creating all Property Tax Regulations in California, which Assessors must follow.