Property tax rate decrease set

Higher valuations may offset savings for land owners, official warns

KINGMAN ­ The adoption of the new fiscal year county budget could see a property tax reduction for county residents.

In response to the passage of the Truth in Taxation bill which requires counties to limit property tax revenue growth to 2 percent, Mohave County is proposing lowering the primary property tax rate for the first time since 1997.

"The primary property tax rate for Mohave County for 2007 will be $1.6777 per $100 assessed value, down from the $1.75 that has been charged each year since 1997," said John Timko, Mohave County financial services director.

Timko warned, however, the possible reduction might not result in a tax bill lower than last year's. If a property's valuation has increased over the year, the tax bill may still be higher given the new valuation. Timko said the county is proposing an increase in primary property taxes of $479,689, or 1.81 percent.

This is all part of the proposed budget that will be reviewed in a public meeting. Timko and County Manager Ron Walker presented a recommendation for a $275 million dollar budget, up from last year's $263 million budget, on June 14. Department heads and elected officials, Timko said, had one more opportunity to make proposals for the budget for things that were not included in the staff recommendations.

Timko said the highlights of next year's budget included an approximate $4.8 million increase in mandatory programs. He said $2 million of that is for the AHCCCS/ALTCS funds. General fund dollars will total about $90 million of the budget, an estimated increase of about 13 percent.

See BUDGET, 3A