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Jones recommends lower property tax rate

Mecklenburg County property owners would pay less in taxes under a recommendation made by County Manager Harry Jones.

As part of his $1.41 billion fiscal 2013 budget plan, revealed this week, Jones is calling for the county’s tax rate to decrease from 81.66 cents for every $100 in a property’s value to 79.22 cents, a decline of 2.44 cents.

According to the county, that would mean the owner of a property with an assessed value of, say, $200,000 would pay $49 less in taxes a year.

Jones said it would be the lowest county tax rate in eight years.

But some taxes will rise for residents in unincorporated parts of the county.

Last month, the county OK’d a plan creating five fire protection service districts to pay for volunteer fire services. Rates will vary by district in fiscal 2013, but most are set at 5 cents for every $100 in assessed property value. The county said the taxes would allow it to stop paying $2.4 million a year to subsidize volunteer fire departments. The new taxes are partially responsible for the 2.44-cent decline in county taxes in fiscal 2013.

In fiscal 2013, unincorporated residents will also see the tax rate they pay for police services rise from 18.66 cents to 19.37 cents for every $100 in assessed property value.

Jones’ plan needs approval from the county’s Board of Commissioners, which is set to decide the tax rate and adopt a budget June 5.

Fiscal 2013 begins July 1 and runs to June 30, 2013.

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