Millage rate increases approved by local governing bodies
By Judy A. Maxwell
Morgan County’s two major taxing entities each approved property-tax increases during called meetings last Thursday night.
The Morgan County Board of Commissioners and Morgan County Board of Education met separately and approved millage-rate increases for the 2011-12 budget years. The BOC approved a 8.999 mill rate, an increase of 0.599 mills. The BOE approved a mill rate of 15.545, an increase of 1.802.
County property owners will pay a total ad valorem of $2,453.50 for every $100,000 of assessed property value.
City of Madison, the City of Rutledge and the City of Buckhead also approved millage rate hikes during called meetings Thursday. That means property owners in these municipalities will pay even more ad valorem on top of the countywide levies. In Madison, the city council approved a mill rate of 5.446, an increase of 0.652 over last year’s rate (4.794). Property owners will pay an additional $544.60 for every $100,000 of assessed property value.
Rutledge city council voted to keep its millage rate the same at 3.734, meaning a property owner will continue to pay $373.40 per every $100,000 of assessed value.
Buckhead city council approved a slight increase of 0.002860, which equals $28.60 for every $100,000 of assessed value, an $8.60 increase over last year’s tax levy.
Bostwick City Council plans to vote on its proposed mill rate of 1.12 or $112 per every $100,000 of assessed property value at 4 p.m. Thursday, July 28. The proposed rate is unchanged from last year.
The BOC and the BOE each OK’d mill rate increases that were lower than the state-allowed amount. And both boards shifted monies from their reserve accounts to balance their 2011-12 budgets. The BOC moved about $1 million from its savings, and the BOE transferred $2 million. The BOC spending plan totals $17.4 million and the BOE budget is $27.7 million.
The BOE revenue includes $1.8 million in excess ELOST collections. State law requires the BOE to return the over-collection of EPLOST funds to taxpayers in the form of reduced ad valorem. The BOE met the mandate by not increasing the mill rate by an additional 2.2 mills, which equals $1.8 million. Former Superintendent Stan DeJarnett said last spring that property owners would not receive ELOST reimbursement checks in the mail, but would see the 2011 millage rate offset by the extra $1.8 million.
Bostwick has scheduled a public hearing for 2 p.m. Tuesday, July 26, and a public hearing and a council vote at 4 p.m. Thursday, July 28.
Printed in the July 28 edition