During the Board of Supervisors meeting on Monday, August 21, 2023, a public hearing on the Mill budget was scheduled for 10am, September 14, 2023 at the Union County Chancery Clerk Office. This public hearing will provide an opportunity for residents to voice their concerns and opinions regarding the proposed property tax increase. It is an important step in the decision-making process, allowing community members to participate and have their voices heard.
Residents in Union County have been expressing concerns over information regarding a potential increase in property taxes. Many are worried about the impact this could have on their financial well-being and ability to afford their homes.
In Mississippi, property tax increases are tied to a Mississippi constitutional requirement for reassessment of property values every four years. This reassessment aims to align assessed values with market values. The mill rate can be adjusted to maintain revenue levels despite the increased assessed value. So, even with a lower mill rate, the county can still generate the same amount of revenue.
The mill budget and school bond are related in terms of funding for the school district. The mill budget refers to the property tax rate applied to the assessed value of properties within the district. Portions of this tax revenue is typically used to fund the day-to-day operations of the school district, including salaries, utilities, and maintenance.
On the other hand, a school bond is a type of long-term borrowing that allows the district to raise funds for specific capital projects, such as building new schools, renovating facilities, or upgrading technology. The funds raised through the school bond are typically repaid over time, often through an increase in taxes. If the school bond is voted in and property taxes increase, you may be personally liable for any amount that exceeds the assessed value of your Homestead Exemption. This means you could be responsible for paying the additional tax amount out of pocket, unless you are 65 0r older, disabled, or meet other requirements outlined in MS tax code on Homestead Exemption.
To summarize, the county and residents are currently dealing with multiple issues. It’s important to recognize that the mill budget provides continuous operational funding for the school district and the county. While a school bond allows for extra funding for capital projects that may not be possible within the regular budget.
As a county, we must acknowledge that our reputation for having exceptional schools in North East Mississippi is no longer a secret. However, with an increasing number of students, we need to make necessary improvements to our school facilities and implement enhanced safety measures. These upgrades go beyond what can be covered by the daily operations budget, which is where the school bond becomes crucial. By issuing a school bond, we can secure the funds needed to address these pressing needs and ensure our students have the best possible learning environment.
- Kendall Stancil
NOTE- Chart is just an estimated tax amount increase. Totals will vary if the bond is voted in.