What Are Property Taxes Going to be Like Next Year?

The Board of Selectmen voted to keep the single property tax rate.

Easton Town Offices. Patch File Photo.
Easton Town Offices. Patch File Photo.
Easton will keep its single tax rate for all property classes, meaning a roughly 85 cent increase in residential property taxes--from $15.80 per $1,000 valuation in FY13 to $16.65 in FY14.

Chief Assessor Robbie Alford explained at Monday night's Selectmen meeting that the recommendation to keep the rates was meant to avoid burdening local businesses. Shifting the rates to keep residential property taxes from rising, would mean an increase of about $6 for businesses. 

Alford pointed out that he was talking in averages; not some people's rates will decrease and some will increase. Board of Selectman Chair Colleen Corona clarified that FY13 and FY14 numbers lagged behind current market and are essentially from 2012 and 2013 respectively. 

"Property values went down in 2012 essentially; that doesn’t change at all how we collect taxes. We're allowed to collect a certain amount and then add 2 ½ percent to that and then spread it across the community," she said.  "It doesn’t matter if your property value decreased, generally your property taxes are not going to decrease under prop 2 ½."

Corona clarified that the debate is on whether the town should make property taxes on businesses higher. "To have slight savings on residential taxes" would mean a much larger increase on businesses that could potentially drive them out of town. The Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to keep the rate.  


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