In 1910 the Land Tax Act 1910 (No.2284) was assented to, providing for a tax to be levied on the unimproved value of land and for the general assessment of land values. For the purposes of the assessment and levy of taxation, valuations of land throughout Victoria were required. Such valuations were able to be undertaken by assessors employed under the Act, or were able to be obtained from local authorities. Section 16 (4) of the Act indicates that all valuations were to be included in a valuation register.
This series consists of loose-leaf valuation registers which appear to have been initiated for land tax purposes. The contents of the registers extant date from circa 1930. It is believed, however, that valuation details were recorded in such a manner prior to this time, possibly from the passing of the 1910 legislation, but that when pages of the registers became full of information they were removed and either kept separately or were destroyed. This would account for the existence of some volumes which contain only 'old' pages from the registers.
Entries in the registers were variously made in house number order (metropolitan land), in Section and Crown Allotment Order (rural land) or in lodged plan number order (metropolitan or rural land). In addition, for urban municipalities a separate register was often maintained for flats and apartment buildings. This series therefore provides a comprehensive lot by lot record of land values throughout Victoria. For each property the following details were able to be recorded in the register:
no. of house (metropolitan only)
dimensions of land (metropolitan land) or acreage (rural land)
lot and lodged plan number or Crown Allotment number
details of improvements on the land, eg: type of building
capital improved value
year in which a municipal valuation of the property was adopted
sale particulars, including : price, date of transfer, whether cash or terms
tax payer details, ie a record of the owners of the property
title volume and folio number if known.
Until 1969 the series was recorded by the Land Tax section of the Department of the Treasurer (VA 865). Subsequently the Land Tax section developed into a Land Tax (Valuation) Branch. Despite the appointment of a Valuer-General within the Local Government Department in 1960, it appears evident that the use of the registers remained with the Land Tax Branch until 1969 when the valuation staff of the Land Tax (Valuation) Branch were transferred to the Office of the Valuer-General (VA 2322).
Although the registers were initially a significant source of valuation information for land tax assessments this was not their only function. The registers were equally useful as a comprehensive record of property identification, ownership, values and transactions. In fact the former function of the series actually ceased, it is believed in the early 1970's, after the land tax section of the State Taxation Office began to rely primarily on municipal valuations.
During the 1970's the recording of valuation details began to be computerized. It is evident that the computerized system was introduced gradually into the agency. Within head office an on-line computerized system appears to have been introduced by 1979, however, within the regional offices the registers may have continued to be used into the 1980's. From the on-line system valuation details are currently transferred to microfiche two or three years after their entry on the database. In addition, it is evident that, between 1974 and the introduction of the on-line system in 1979, information was transferred from some valuation registers onto computer tape, and these records are also held, in 1990, by the Office of the Valuer-General.
RELATIONSHIP TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT RECORDS
The exact nature of the relationship between this series of Valuation Registers and the valuation records of Local Government agencies, sentenced as permanent within PROS 84/25 General Disposal Schedule : Local Government Records, is yet to be determined.