A GIS-BASED REAL ESTATE TAX INFORMATION SYSTEM The Case Study of Sinkor District, Monrovia - Liberia

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The Real Estate Tax Division is responsible to steer the affairs of the property tax within the City of Monrovia. Its statutory duties are to provide the most efficient and effective method to list, assess and collect taxes on all taxable properties (unimproved and improved land) situated within the City of Monrovia. Determination of taxes on real estates requires accurate information on individualized property structure, location, ownership, condition, size, and its use classification. Moreover, today’s communities are undergoing rapid developments and so, is the need to regularly piece together those changes to keep the assessment records up-to-date. At the Division, the existing method of property mapping is not parcel based and thus is increasingly incapable of supporting unique parcel identification. Additionally, these property records are maintained in various types like filing cabinets, on paper maps of varying qualities and different sizes, and in computers using different software. This makes paramount the importance of bringing full information communication technology (ICT) into the Division’s day-to-day workings, especially the need to capture, store, retrieve, update and manage large amounts of data within a unique system. Further, any system that can visualize data and analyze trends in spatial context can enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the taxation procedures. Remote sensing and Geographic Information System (GIS) provide a whole new dimension to ICT as they bring the spatial elements to it (ICT). The study aims at developing a GIS-based tax information system for Monrovia. System development techniques were used. The process involves structuring the geospatial database in its capabilities for both spatial and non-spatial data capture, management, and manipulation of the required data sets. The GIS-based tax information system is one such endeavor that makes tax assessment simpler by providing locational and thematic information on individualized properties including 2D footprints of structures on each improved parcel in rating areas. The system automatically calculates the tax due on each property just by inputting raw data. Additionally, the system has the potential to generate tax recovery information and locate each property when required, so as to keep a check on tax defaulters. Most importantly, the GIS-based tax information system provides opportunities to perform various analyses on spatial and attribute data, thus providing a base for decision-making, future planning and streamlining the workflow of the property tax assessment.
Thesis Submitted to the Department of Geomatic Engineering, Kwame Nkrumah University Of Science and Technology in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master Of Science In Geomatic Engineering.