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Bulloch County Board of Commissioners to hold tax hike hearings Aug. 7, 14, 21
All hearings set for 6:30 p.m. at North Main Annex
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The three public hearings required before the Bulloch County Board of Commissioners can vote on a proposed increase in the property tax millage rate are scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on the next three Mondays: Aug. 7, Aug. 14 and Aug. 21.

All three hearings are to be held in the commissioners’ meeting room at the North Main Annex, 115 North Main St., Statesboro. The county’s fiscal year 2024 budget, as adopted by the commissioners in June, called for a millage increase, now recommended by County Manager Tom Couch as 1.5 mills.

The county government’s new, general millage rate would be 12.85 mills, up from last year’s 11.35 mills. That alone would be a 13.2% increase, but when compounded with the inflation in assessed property values, it amounts to a 28.04% increase on average, so that is the percentage stated in a formal “Notice of Property Tax Increase” the county published as ads in recent editions of the Statesboro herald.

Those statements also refer to the 12.85-mill rate as “an increase of 2.814 mills” instead of just 1.5 mills. This is because the state law known as the Georgia Property Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights requires that the notices be based on a rollback rate, the rate to which the tax would need to be reduced to fully compensate for inflation in assessed values. The rollback rate would have been 10.036 mills, as stated in the notices.

The notices also indicate that the 28.04% proposed increase would amount to a tax increase of $251.01 on a home with a fair market value of $225,000 or a $225.12 increase on a non-homestead property with a fair market value of $200,000.

Couch and county department leaders say the tax hike is needed to “catch up” in providing a basic level of services after inflation and years of delayed hiring and renovations and to prepare the county for further growth.

After the last of the hearings, the commissioners could vote on the tax increase during their 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22 regular meeting.

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