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School board millage rate hearings Aug. 9, Aug. 18

  • By The Newnan Times-Herald
  • |
  • Aug. 04, 2022 - 11:55 AM

School board millage rate hearings Aug. 9, Aug. 18

The Newnan Times-Herald

The Coweta County Board of Education has set three tax hearings to consider a recommended 2022 property tax millage rate of 16.00 mills.

That property tax rate would represent a 1.14 mill reduction in the current school tax rate of 17.14 mills, adopted in 2021. If the 16.00 mill rate is adopted by the school board, it would be the lowest Coweta school tax rate since 1983.

The hearings will be at 167 Werz Industrial Blvd. in Newnan on Aug. 9 at 7:30 a.m. and on Aug. 18 at noon and 6:30 p.m.

The proposed reduction in this year’s school millage rates follows growth and a round of local revaluation of real and personal property in Coweta County this year. The total value of assessed property in the county increased to $7.9 billion in 2022, up from $6.4 billion in 2021 and $6.1 billion in 2020.

The proposed tax rate of 16.00 mills would lead to an anticipated 7.4 percent increase in local school system tax revenues over a projected rollback rate of 14.90 mills. However, the sharp increase in the value of real and personal property in Coweta County from 2021 to 2022 will also, under state law, lead to an anticipated decrease in state educational funding of approximately $7.1 million under the state school funding formulas.

The state of Georgia deducts each school district’s “Local Fair Share” from total state educational funding each year, based on each district’s tax base. As the tax digest grows, that amount increases. Coweta’s $32.3 million in fair share for 2022 is projected to be $39.4 million for 2023.

This represents a decrease in state educational funding of $7.1 million for Coweta. The increase in local tax revenue is proposed to offset the projected decrease in state funding.

On average, the proposed rate of 16.00 mills would increase taxes for a home with a fair market value of $250,000 by an average of $130.04, not including applicable homestead tax exemptions for eligible homeowners.

That average is based on the anticipated increase in the tax digest for Coweta County as a whole. However, if the assessed value of a homeowner’s existing real property is the same as the previous year, or had not increased by more than 7.4 percent since last year, then that homeowner would see a lower tax bill for school purposes under the proposed rate of 16.00 mills.

This also occurred in 2020. In response to that local property revaluation, the Coweta County School Board reduced the property tax rate from 18.59 mills – where it had remained for 18 years – to 17.30 mills.

The board also called for a citizen referendum in 2019 to increase the value of local senior citizen homestead tax exemptions. That referendum was approved by voters and put in place in 2020. In 2021, the board further reduced local school property taxes to 17.14 mills.

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