Commissioners set to propose tax rate

By Kristen Tribe | Published Wednesday, July 31, 2013

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Wise County officials are wading through numbers in the depths of budget talks. In a special meeting Monday, Tax Assessor Monte Shaw presented the county property tax rates for fiscal year 2014 to county commissioners.

He reported that this year’s effective rate is 38.7620 cents per $100 valuation, approximately eight-tenths of a cent higher than last year’s tax rate of 37.89 cents per $100 valuation.

The effective rate raises the same amount of tax dollars as last year’s rate based on this year’s property tax values.

County Judge Bill McElhaney said the working budget for fiscal year 2014 is based on the effective rate, which if approved, would mean a slight tax increase.

“This is in essence the same amount dollar-wise as we did last year,” he said. “This also includes an approximate 3 percent increase for wages, and there’s a few places where there’s been … a little bit more over that for equalization. Mostly that’s for elected officials.”

Auditor Ann McCuiston said Tuesday that the 3-percent raise is not across the board. If approved, that money will be distributed to department heads to allocate to employees as they see fit.

Commissioners will go over the proposed budget in detail at a workshop 10 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, in the Wise County Sheriff’s Office training room. The meeting is open to the public.

Shaw also presented the effective rate for the Weatherford College Wise County branch maintenance tax. It’s 4.7205 cents per $100 valuation, one-tenth of a cent increase over last year’s rate of 4.6148.

Commissioners will meet 9 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 1, to propose the county tax rate and the WCWC branch maintenance tax rate. The meeting will be held in the third-floor conference room of the courthouse in Decatur and is also open to the public.

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