“I always, always picked up the phone,” he said.
In 2001, Arevalo received the Institute of Assessing Officers Highest Achievement Designation.
Arevalo, an American citizen originally from Bolivia, said speaks more than five languages including Spanish, his native language, Portuguese, French and Russian. In retirement, he said, he would like to use those language skills in writing, translation and interpretation.
The city has awarded a multi-year contract for assessment services instead of hiring an assessor to succeed Arevalo.
The city is in a transition period, Arevalo said, and the contractual arrangement “will suit the city perfectly” as municipal officials decide conducting another revaluation.
The city’s equalization rate is 73 percent, Arevalo said.
As assessor, Arevalo said, he had “a soft spot” for senior citizens and knew which property owners to call to remind them to file their forms for the state’s STAR property-tax exemption program.
The state is updating the STAR system this year and requiring all homeowners to re-register to participate in the program.
But after today, Arevalo won’t be reminding taxpayers from the assessor’s office.
“I’m going to miss it terribly,” he said Thursday. “It’s bittersweet.”