By Tia Lynn Lecorchick staff writer

Morgan County property owners have been receiving property appraisal notices from the Morgan County Tax Assessors sent out on May 8, an annual occurrence, based on their compiled digest of all Morgan County property values. The digest contains the current calculated value of every property in Morgan County based on all market activity from 2013. According to Chuck Anglin, chief appraiser, it is very possible the millage rate will be lowered this year on account of property values increasing for the first in time in three years.

“The last three years prior to this year, the digest had decreased and the millage rate increased. But this year the digest has increased, property values have gone up, so it is likely that the millage rate will go down,” explained Anglin. “The values are up on most cases from last year. They are up to where they were from around 2010, but still way down from the peak times. This isn’t a boom, but it is a stabilization,” said Anglin.

The property values of the tax assessors latest digest will be used by the County Commissioners to determine the millage rate for property taxes later this year. “You have to look at the entire average of what the county, schools and state needs in their budgets,” said Anglin about how the millage rate is determined.

“The county budget and the school budget portions are a very significant part of the millage rate and the state budget portion is very small,” said Anglin. According to the Morgan County Tax Assessors website, the basis property taxation is the fair market value of the property which is established as of January 1 each year. The tax is levied on the assessed value of the property which , by law, is established at 40 percent of fair market value. The amount of tax is determined by the tax rate (mill rate) levied by various entities. One mill is equal to $1 for each $1000 of assessed value or .001.