Property values increase

School’s millage rate to stay same

by Celia Shortt

The Coweta County School System is maintaining its tax rate of 18.59 mills for the 2014 property taxes, but will see an increase in tax proceeds as the county’s overall tax digest of property values has gone up.

The Coweta Board of Education “plans to maintain this year's millage rate at 18.59 mills, which is the same as it has been since 2004,” said Dean Jackson, public information officer for the school system. “This year reflects stronger growth in the tax digest than we have seen in several years, however, it is still below where we were five years ago, in 2009.”

The increase in value for the county’s tax digest is a result of many properties in Coweta County being assessed at a higher value this year. This higher value means the school system expects to see a 2.74 percent increase in the property taxes it will receive. This increase is over what it would receive if it implemented a “rollback” tax rate to keep proceeds at the same level.

In the information sent out this week by the school system, the 2014 net maintenance and operations digest remains below the 2009 net maintenance and operations digest.

Every year, the board of tax assessors for Coweta County reviews the assessed value of taxable property in the county, as a requirement for the state.

When the trend of prices for properties recently sold in the county demonstrate an increase in the fair market value, the tax assessors are required to “re-determine the value of such property and increase the assessment.” This action is called a reassessment. According to Georgia law, once the total digest of taxable property is completed, a rollback millage rate must be determined. This rollback rate would produce the same total revenue “on the current year’s digest that last year’s millage rate would have produced had no reassessments occurred,” according to Coweta school officials.

Since the school system is keeping the same millage rate – essentially raising the expected tax proceeds – it must hold three public hearings to allow the public to voice any opinions or ask any questions about the tax increase.

The public hearings for this tax increase will be held at the Board of Education Office at 237 Jackson Street. The first and second hearings are scheduled for Aug. 4 at 7:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., and the third is scheduled for Aug. 12, at 6 p.m.

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