Last night Wake County Commissioners approved a whopping 10 percent property tax hike on residents, a rate even higher than that recommended by the county manager.
From the N&O:
Wake County’s new property tax rate will be 72.07 cents per $100 of assessed property value, a 6.63-cent or roughly 10.13 percent increase.
The owner of a $300,000 house will pay $2,162.10 in county property taxes, a $198.90 increase.
County Manager David Ellis had recommended a property tax rate increase of 6.36 cents per $100 to cover the $1.47 billion budget.
“I am very proud of the budget we are putting forward,” said Commissioner Chair Jessica Holmes.
I would question a person who takes pride in forcibly extracting more revenue from citizens, but let’s continue:
“While it does not solve all of the school system’s problems, it is an acknowledgment that we hear you, we respect you, that we understand and quite frankly are calling out the General Assembly just down the street,” Holmes added.
Holmes’ comment indicates this was in no small part a case of political posturing – using taxpayers as pawns to try to score political points with her base.
This marks the sixth consecutive year of tax increases for Wake County.
Moreover, as my colleague Bob Luebke recently wrote, from FY 2012-13 to 2017-18, for Wake Co. schools “enrollment was up 6.6 percent, overall spending increased by more than twice that number (13.6 percent), even adjusting for inflation.”
Finally there’s this: “Voters backed three bonds last fall totaling $1.1 billion, which accounts for 3.8 cents of the property tax rate hike.”
This measure serves as a reminder to voters who so frequently and easily approve government bonds: these increase the government’s debt and must be paid for with tax dollars. Approving bonds almost guarantees that you are approving a future tax hike.