New con­struc­tion means new rev­enue for schools

♦ The school board plans to col­lect more prop­erty taxes in 2019. Most of the in­crease is driven by new con­struc­tion, mean­ing most ex­ist­ing prop­erty own­ers won’t see a tax hike.

The Catoosa County News - - FRONT PAGE - From staff re­ports

The Ca­toosa County Board of Ed­u­ca­tion will meet on Wed­nes­day, Aug. 21, to adopt a new — and re­duced — prop­erty tax rate.

Un­der the new rate, the Board of Ed­u­ca­tion will col­lect $532,465 more in prop­erty taxes this year than it did in 2018.

But this doesn’t mean proper- ty own­ers will see a hike in their taxes. The in­crease in col­lec­tions is due mainly to new con­struc­tion driv­ing up the county’s tax digest, which is the value of all prop­erty in the county. In the past year the tax digest has risen 3.5%, from $1.619 tril­lion to $1.676 tril­lion.

“an Ca­toosa County res­i­dents will not see in­crease in their tax bill be­cause the Board of Ed­u­ca­tion is tak­ing the roll­back mill­age rate for the sixth con­sec­u­tive year. With new con­struc­tion and new res­i­dents in the county, the school sys­tem will see a slight in­crease in rev­enue due to more tax­able prop­er­ties. School Su­per­in­ten­dent De­nia Reese

“Ca­toosa County res­i­dents will not see an in­crease in their tax bill,” School Su­per­in­ten­dent De­nia Reese said, “be­cause the Board of Ed­u­ca­tion is tak­ing the roll­back mill­age rate for the sixth con­sec­u­tive year. With new con­struc­tion and new res­i­dents in the county, the school sys­tem will see a slight in­crease in rev­enue due to more tax­able prop­er­ties.”

“Our Board of Ed­u­ca­tion is com­mit­ted to be­ing good ste­wards of tax­payer rev­enue,” Reese said. “With this roll­back, the 2019 mill­age rate of 16.905 is al­most the same as the 2012 rate (16.773).”

Blake Stansell, di­rec­tor of fi­nance said, “The tax com­mis­sioner’s of­fice pro­vided a roll­back mill­age rate that would gen­er­ate the same amount of rev­enue from cur­rent res­i­dents in 2019. This means that cur­rent res­i­dents will not see an in­crease from their 2018 tax bill.”

For 2018, the school board levied a 17.171 mill­age (prop­erty tax) rate and col­lected $27,804,990 in prop­erty taxes. For 2019, the school board plans to levy a 16.905 mill­age rate and col­lect $28,337,455, an in­crease of $532,465 (1.9%).

The school board will be col­lect­ing more in prop­erty taxes in 2019 than in 2018 — even though the pro­posed mill­age rate for 2019 is lower — be­cause the county’s tax digest is greater: for 2018, the to­tal value was $1,619,299,413; for 2019, the to­tal value is $1,676,276,550, an in­crease of $56,977,137 (3.5%).

Most of the in­crease in the county’s prop­erty digest is due to new con­struc­tion, in­clud­ing new hous­ing.

De­nia Reese

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