Henry County's property tax asking reflects slight increase
By MEGAN COOPER
Mt. Pleasant News
The fiscal year 2014-2015 budget approved by the Henry County Board of Supervisors during the Feb. 27 meeting calls for a tax rate increase of .00576 cents to 7.94719 per $1,000 taxable valuation for urban areas and an increase of .10576 to 11.69719 per $1,000 for taxable valuation for rural areas.
To put this in perspective, an urban property with a taxable valuation of $50,000 will be taxed $397.36, and a rural property with a taxable valuation of $120,000 will be taxed $1,403.66.
This is an increase of .29 cents for an urban property with a taxable valuation of $50,000 and an increase of $12.69 for a rural property with a taxable valuation of $120,000.
The county will not be receiving any additional revenue from taxes this year.
The county valuation did not increase this year either. The county valuation for rural area decreased by $8,312,887 and the urban area valuation decreased by $3,379,270, according to Henry County Auditor Shelly Barber, “probably due to business property tax credit and the rollback on commercial properties.”
The county will see a decrease in tax revenue this fiscal year. In fiscal year 2013-2014, the county received $7,306,549 in taxes levied on property. For this fiscal year of 2014-2015, the county will see $7,228,251 in taxes levied on property, which is a decrease of $78,298.
Total revenues and other sources for fiscal year 2014-2015 are listed at $13,496,38. This is a decrease of $333,068 from the $13,829,453 in revenues in fiscal year 2013-2014; this is due to the valuation going down.
Total expenditures and other uses for fiscal year 2014-2015 are listed at $16,167,190, which is $1,111,792 more than the $15,055,398 spent in fiscal year 2013-2014. The increase in expenditures is due to an increase in wages, benefits and general cost of living, Barber explained.
One major area of increase was on the mental health line, which increased by $964,967, going from fiscal year 2013-2014 total of $781,160, to the 2014-2015 total of $1,746,127.
“The reason for the increase for mental health is because we moved the leftover fund balance to ensure money for the crisis centers,” said Henry County Central Point of Coordination (CPC) Sarah Berndt. “These are expensive services.”
Barber added, “the levy for those services did not increase, it was the leftover fund balance.”
Another area of increase is in the roads and transportation budget. On the Roads and Transportation line, expenditures are listed at $4,379,200, which is an increase of $309,700 from fiscal year 2013-2014 expenditures.
Barber explained the reason for this increase was because; “we transferred money from local-option sales tax to the road department to cover expenditures.”