Bond mill­age re­duced, tax di­gest in­crease

The Covington News - - NEWS - MARTIN RAND III news@cov­news.com

The bond mill­age rate in the New­ton County School Sys­tem (NCSS) will be re­duced to ex­actly zero for the up­com­ing fis­cal year.

As part of a pre­vi­ously ap­proved SPLOST by the cit­i­zens, the bond mill­age, which is cur­rently .45 mills and only pays for school debt, will have to be done away with for the 2015-2016 fis­cal year, says NCSS Ex­ec­u­tive Fi­nan­cial Man­ager Erica Robin­son.

With the re­duc­tion in the bond, home­own­ers will prob­a­bly pay about $154 less in taxes than what they paid in 2009, Robin­son told the New­ton County School Board (BOE) at a spe­cial-called meet­ing Thurs­day night.

The main­te­nance and oper­a­tions ( M&O) mill­age rate will re­main at 20 mills, which is the amount it’s been since be­ing raised from 18.21 mills be­fore the 2010-2011 fis­cal year.

While the M&O mill­age rate will stay the same, the school dis­trict will more than likely have gross taxes of about $41.28 mil­lion, nearly $2 mil­lion more than last school year the high­est amount since the 2011-2012 fis­cal year. The tax di­gest will about $2.06 mil­lion, the first time it’s been over $2 mil­lion since fis­cal year 2011-2012.

Home prop­erty val­ues in New­ton County are cur­rently on the rise which is con­tribut­ing to the in­crease in taxes.

“Even though its’ bet­ter than 2015, we still have a lit­tle bit of a ways to go to get back to 2009,” Robin­son said.

The NCSS is still try­ing to re­cover to the lev­els these fig­ures were at in fis­cal year 2008-2009, be­fore the great re­ces­sion hit the realest mar­ket. Dur­ing that year, the school dis­trict had a tax di­gest of $2.95 mil­lion raised about $53.81 mil­lion in taxes.

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