Guilford Finance Board raises tax rate to 20.04

Published: Saturday, May 30, 2009
By Rachael Scarborough King, Register Staff

GUILFORD — The Board of Finance this week set the tax rate for fiscal 2009-10 at 20.04 mills, following voter approval of a $75.51 million budget at referendum last week.

In a brief special meeting, the board approved the tax rate by a vote of 4-0, with members Matthew Hoey, Michael Ayles, James O’Keefe and Kimberly Brockett in attendance.

The rate means that homeowners will pay $20.04 in taxes for every $1,000 of assessed property value. That translates to $4,080 a year for a house with an assessment of $200,000.

The new tax rate represents a 4.4 percent increase over the current levy of 19.19 mills.

The meeting this week followed a referendum May 19 at which voters approved the $75.51 million budget by a tally of 3,103 to 2,429. Voters had previously rejected a $77.12 million budget that would have increased taxes by nearly 7 percent.

Although the budget overall is set to rise 0.85 percent in the coming fiscal year, officials said the larger increase in the tax rate was due to a reduction in revenues and a decision to not budget in reliance on money from the fund balance. The funding for fiscal 2008-09 was $75.5 million.

This year was the first since 2003 in which the budget proposal initially failed in referendum. That year, voters also rejected the budget once before approving a lower proposal.

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