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Thu, Sept. 19

County supes set tax rates on $241M budget
59% county property tax goes to education

Chart shows the Yavapai County Property Tax for fiscal year 2019-20. (Yavapai County/Courtesy)

Chart shows the Yavapai County Property Tax for fiscal year 2019-20. (Yavapai County/Courtesy)

With a vote of 4-1, Yavapai County Supervisors approved the 2019-20 Yavapai County primary and secondary property tax rates at the board’s special meeting Monday, Aug. 19, in Prescott.

Supervisor Craig Brown said after the meeting that he opposed the tax rate because “the budget is inflated.”

Arizona state statutes require counties to approve the tax rates by the third Monday in August and convey the tax rates for all jurisdictions to the County Treasurer. This process takes place after the supervisors have approved their final budget.

The board acts for the following jurisdictions under its control: Yavapai County, Fire District Contribution, Yavapai County Free Library District, Yavapai County Flood Control District, Ash Fork Street Lighting Improvement District, Seligman Street Lighting Improvement District, Yarnell Street Lighting Improvement District, and Seligman Sanitary District.

The supervisors also conveyed tax rates set by other local jurisdictions that include 18 fire districts, 18 special districts, one college, five cities and towns, and 23 school districts.

The supervisors approved a tentative budget July 3, tentatively increasing the primary property tax.

Two Truth in Taxation public hearings occurred: July 17 in Cottonwood, and Aug. 5 in Prescott. Following the public hearing portion of the Aug. 5 meeting, the board set the tax rate and approved the final budget. At Monday’s hearing, the board approved the primary and secondary property tax.

The primary property tax rate for FY2019-20 is set at $2.0152; this past year’s rate was $1.7788.

“It impacts existing residential property by $30.73 for every $100,000 of assessed value (limited property value),” explained Yavapai County Administrator Phil Bourdon.

Afterward, Brown explained his nay vote, saying he felt all departments across the board contributed to the budget, which he said was inflated by about $3 million.

About $1 million is due to the unfunded mandates by the state legislature, such as providing additional security measures for courtrooms, he said.

“Unfunded mandates are devastating,” Brown added.

In addition, he specifically objects to the amount of funds paying for travel, up 85 percent this year, he said.

Follow Sue Tone on Twitter @ToneNotes. Reach her at stone@prescottaz.com or 928-445-3333, ext. 2043.

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