Countywide tax rates approved, going up

2013-08-20T00:00:00Z 2013-08-26T15:39:26Z Countywide tax rates approved, going upBy Joe Ferguson Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Property tax rates are again on the rise this year, with most taxing districts choosing increases in the rate in order to offset continued drops in assessed home values.

Homeowners who see increases in their property tax bill won’t pay much more, with estimated property valuations expected to drop by 8 percent in Pima County, according to estimates by the county staff.

The Board of Supervisors set Pima County’s combined tax rate at $5.13 per $100 of the assessed valuation in a 3-2 vote Monday, up by 6 percent from last year.

By comparison, the city of Tucson increased its tax rate by 13 percent this year, and the city of South Tucson upped its rate by roughly 8 percent when compared with a year ago.

In addition to setting its own rate, the Board of Supervisors approved dozens of tax rates set by municipalities, school boards, fire district boards and other special taxing districts.

Some of the largest rate increases were in school and fire districts, with Tanque Verde Unified, Sahuarita Unified and Vail school districts signing off on 20 percent increases in their combined tax rates.

By comparison, the largest school district in the area, the Tucson Unified School District, is passing on a rate increase of roughly 2 percent.

The Avra Valley, Golder Ranch and Rincon Valley fire districts each passed 12 percent rate increases to the communities they serve.

Pima Community College also increased its tax rate by 10 percent.

Supervisor Ally Miller voted against the tax rate levy, telling her colleagues she could not support it because the county has increased the size of its annual budget.

Supervisor Ray Carroll, without comment, also voted against the tax levy.

County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry labeled the fiscal year 2014 budget as “a maintenance budget” earlier this year, stating he had previously forced departments to cut between 12 and 15 percent over the previous three fiscal years.

Tax bills, which will be mailed out in September, are due Oct. 1 and are considered delinquent if received after Nov. 1.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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