The Hamilton County Commission approved a lower certified tax rate on Wednesday, but some taxpayers will still see an increase due to property values.
Last week, the Hamilton County property assessor released new lowered certified tax rates approved by the Tennessee Board of Equalization for the county and its municipalities.
On Wednesday, the Hamilton County Commission approved the new countywide certified property tax rate, which went from 2.77 to 2.24, to offset property value.
But the impact of the tax rate will vary based on an individual's property value. During this year's countywide property assessment, which happens every four years, property values went up by an average of about 25% since the last reappraisal in 2017.
"To make it real simple for the public if your property was appraised at $100,000 at the 2.76 [rate] and now if your property is appraised at $125,000 and it's a lower rate, your taxes will be the same," Trustee Bill Hullander explained during Wednesday's meeting.
Property Assessor Marty Haynes told the Times Free Press that most property owners in the county, something around 65-70% of residential property owners, will either not see an increase or will pay less than $100 over what they paid last year.
"They may be going up $60, $70 bucks annually, and a considerable number of people are going to pay less than they did last year," Haynes said. "Most people seem to be happy with their marginal tax increase and noticeable property value increase."
The county's 10 municipalities also received lower certified tax rates listed below:
2.2373 (2021 certified)
Some municipalities, including the city of Chattanooga, are still debating whether to accept the lower tax rate as is or "raise" taxes to effectively maintain the current rate, or something close to it. Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly said Tuesday that such an "increase" was possible in next week's budget presentation, but would not exceed the current rate.
Red Bank officials are actively seeking to increase the property tax rate there. The Red Bank Commission voted Tuesday to approve a property tax rate increase of about 11% on first reading, which would bring the rate to $1.10 from $0.99 if it gets final approval on Aug. 17.
The next appraisal will take place in 2025.
Contact Sarah Grace Taylor at email@example.com or 423-757-6416. Follow her on Twitter @_sarahgtaylor.