Following a short Joint Convention to allow a public hearing and discussion of the proposed tax rates for fiscal year 2014, The Board of Aldermen Monday night took up the matter of setting the tax rate and voted unanimously to approve a residential tax rate $15.04 per thousand of valuation and a commercial tax rate of $40.95 per thousand for commercial properties in the city.
The new tax rates reflect the maximum allowable shift from the residential properties to the commercial properties and is also a decrease over last year’s tax rates.
According to Board of Assessors Chairman Bill Hart, the average residential tax bill in Everett will go down by approximately $124 per household this year. This was because housing values in the city have risen since the tax rate was set last year, while the amount the city needs to raise is some $5 million less than could be raised through the property taxes.
The FY 2014 Tax Levy Limit is $90,385,762, but the city only needs to raise $84,594,327 through property taxes.
Residential property owners are not the only ones that will see a decrease in their tax bills this year, as the commercial tax rate dropped more than $2 per thousand from $43.04 per thousand in FY 2013 to the new rate of $40.95 per thousand. The tax rate decrease will mean an average of $1,730 less in taxes for Everett businesses in the new calendar year.
In addition to setting the new tax rates, the Board of Aldermen also voted in favor of adopting a 20-percent residential tax exemption for owner occupied residential properties.
The residential exemption allows for owner occupied residences to benefit from a tax break equal to 20-percent of the average residential value in the city.
In Everett’s case, the average residential value is $275,614. The exemption does not charge the tax rate against the first 20-percent of the average value or $55,123. It effectively works out to an $829 tax break for the 4,000 or so residential properties that are owner occupied.