Local school portion, up 10 percent, drives up taxes

DUBLIN — Dublin’s property tax rate has increased by 6.7 percent over the past year. The rate has been set at $23.64 per $1,000 assessed value, up $1.49 from 2012.

Owners with a property assessed at $200,000 will be billed $4,728.

The town portion of the rate has increased by 6.5 percent, up from $6.08 in 2012 to $6.50 this year.

According to Dublin Town Administrator Sherry Miller, much of the town portion increase is a result of property values decreasing over the past year.

Twenty percent of the town is assessed each year with all properties completed over five years, with values falling a total of $750,000 this year.

Miller said that the loss of Fairpoint Communications in the town was the biggest reason for decreased value in this year’s assessments.

The school portion, which has risen from $10.73 to $11.84, is up 10.3 percent over last year’s rate.

“The biggest portion [of the tax rate increase] was the school,” Miller said.

The ConVal budget for $45.4 million approved at a district meeting in March has been a factor driving up not only Dublin’s property tax rate, but other towns in the school district as well.

Despite the jump in the local school portion, the state school portion of the rate dropped 8.7 percent, going from $2.40 in 2012 to $2.19 this year. The county portion rose 5.8 percent, up from $2.94 to $3.11 over the past year.

While other towns like Greenfield, Lyndeborough and Peterborough have used part of their fund balance to offset property tax rate increases, Dublin generally uses its fund balance to offset costs associated with Town Meeting warrant articles.

“It’s what we’ve always chosen to do,” said Miller.

Tax bills have been sent out to residents and are due Dec. 12.

Elodie can be reached by phone at 924-7172 ext. 228, or by email at ereed@ledgertranscript.com. Elodie is also on Twitter @elodie_reed.

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