Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Aggregate property tax rates fall in Decatur in 2014

The total, effective tax rate for property owners in Decatur is decreasing by 5.5 percent in 2014 compared to 2013 based on decreases in 1) the Decatur school millage rate, 2) DeKalb’s incorporated millage rate for Decatur, and 3) the State of Georgia millage rate. However, individual property owners’ actual tax bills will vary significantly based on their value assessed by DeKalb County. Bills will also vary on the basis of homestead exemptions and fees.

Here are the details:
  1. The property tax millage rate for Decatur’s schools decreased from 20.9 in 2013 to 20.5 mills for 2014. That reduces the combined millage (all city tax rates plus the school rate) from 33.9 in 2013 to 33.5 mills for 2014. 
  2. Property owners in Decatur also pay property tax to DeKalb County. (But the bill they pay to DeKalb is about 80 percent less than what property owners in unincorporated DeKalb pay to the County.) The county tax rate for City residents is determined by the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners. During their July 7 meeting, county commissioners approved a reduction in the county millage rate in Decatur from 12.03 mills in 2013 to 9.58 mills in 2014. 
  3. The millage rate charged by the State of Georgia, which is collected through county bills, also fell from 0.15 in 2013 to 0.1 in 2014 as part of a five-year phase-out of state property taxes. 
As an example, if DeKalb determined the value for a non-homesteaded property of $200,000, it would have paid $3,390 in City property taxes and $974.40 in County taxes for a total property tax liability of $4,364.40 for 2013. The same property with the same value in 2014 would owe $3,350 in City taxes and $774.40 in County taxes for a total property tax liability of $4,124.40 for 2014.  Here are some more examples comparing properties with different values year-over-year:

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