By: Greg Bird
Amid all the discussion Thursday night, the McCreary County Board of Education set the property and motor vehicle tax rates for the coming fiscal year.
Noting the budget shortfalls the District has been experiencing, but also commenting on the economic difficulties in McCreary County, the Board opted to take the least burdensome path for taxpayers by adopting the compensating rate, which does include a small rate increase.
The Board also adopted to keep the Motor Vehicle Tax rate at 30 cents per $100 of assessed value.
The rate adopted Thursday night sets the property tax rate for 2014-15 at 39.6 cents per $100 of assessed property value,wich represents a 0.2 cent per $100 increase over the rate set last year.
Districts have three options when considering tax rates for the coming year. First, the Compensating Tax rate, which would generate an equal amount of revenue as the previous year. Adopting the compensating rate for the current year would generate $1,736,257 in property taxes, about $12,800 more than 2013.
Second, they could have chosen to adopt a rate, set by the state that would substantially generate more income by raising property taxes 11.3 cents per $100. That rate of 50.7 cents would generate over $2.2 million in revenues. If the Board chose that option, it would be subject to a public hearing and possible recall.
The third possibility would be to adopt a rate that would generate 4 percent more revenue than the previous year, which would amount to a 1.5 cent increase overall. That rate would also be subject to a public hearing, but no recall.
This marks the fifth time in the past six years where the School Board opted to adopt the compensating tax rate. In 2011-12 the Board chose the 4 percent increase, which was mandated due to the construction at McCreary Central High School.