I am attempting to map several parcels just to show very basic dimensions (frontage, etc.) and parcel area. I have the parcel area from the municipal assessor's office in acres. And I have a parcel shapefile from my state's GIS entity (MassGIS) that I believe is drawn from the municipal data. There is a "Shape Area" field in the parcel shapefile attribute table, which appears to be in sq meters. I added a field for Area in sq feet, and did "calculate geometry". My problem is that the values in the attribute table for the parcel shapefile are significantly different from those provided by the assessor's office, and I am not sure whose numbers to trust. I need the dimensions of parcels to be correct, and I'm worried that the data in my shapefile is either incorrect or being skewed somehow, which will result incorrect dimensions.
Has anyone else run into this problem? Does this sound like a projection issue, or an issue with the data itself?