The latest five year reappraisal cycle has been completed in DeKalb County and it shows an overall drop in assessments (property values). As a result, the new certified property tax rate, as established by the State Board of Equalization for the 2016-17 fiscal year will be increased from $1.78 to $1.83 per $100 of assessed value. Although the rate will increase, it will generate the overall same amount of property tax revenue for the county government as it did this past year prior to the reappraisal.
If approved by the county commission in July, the new $1.83 certified rate would break down as follows:
County General: 95 cents
Schools: 61 cents
Debt Service: 12 cents
Road Department: 4 cents
Capital Projects Fund: 11 cents
Since the state is fully funding BEP (Basic Education Program) Funding for Schools in the new budget, the county government has to fund a local match, which will result in the school system getting four cents more of the property tax rate than last year.
During Thursday night’s all-committees workshop, County Mayor Tim Stribling shared with the county commissioners the new certified tax rate calculations as determined by the state. The new calculation shows that the total tax base assessment in DeKalb County is now at $468,860,473, down from the prior year assessment by the state of $482,955,266.
Under state law, counties must reappraise every four, five, or six years. DeKalb County is on a five-year reappraisal cycle.
The main purpose of reappraisal is to arrive at current market value for real property throughout the county. Reappraisal is mandated by T.C.A. code 67-5-1601. Reappraisal is used to ensure that residents and businesses are not paying too much or too little taxes based on property values.
Although the certified tax rate is increasing to $1.83, it doesn’t necessarily mean that property owners will pay more. That depends on whether their property assessments went up or down.
The new certified tax rate will be formally established by the county commission when the 2016-17 year budgets are adopted in July.
Although the county commission has the authority to raise the property tax rate above the state certified rate, it is not expected to do so this year. A reduction in the certified rate, which also is not expected to occur, would mean the county commission would have to make budget cuts. Again, the new certified tax rate of $1.83 per $100 of assessed value, established by the state, is to generate the same amount of local revenue to fund county government as the $1.78 rate did last year.