The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors will save the residents of Yavapai County nearly 1.8 million dollars when the budget, scheduled to be voted on next month, is approved. Yavapai County Chairman Thomas Thurman says, “Yavapai County has very little debt, and the little we do have, we are always looking for ways to reduce.” By refinancing the debt, and getting a lower interest rate, Yavapai County expects to save just under $200,000 a year or what works out to be almost $1.8 million over the remaining ten-year life of the loan.
County Administrator Phil Bourdon says “The Budget for this coming fiscal year is up nearly 11%, but that increase is due in large part to the one-time addition of a refinancing loan, at the lower interest rate, to pay off the old debt with the additional savings.”
Yavapai County in past times of economic downturn has used its financial reserves to avoid raising taxes. This was the case several years ago when the State shared revenues declined dramatically along with county revenues because of many economic factors. The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors cut expenses and asked the Flood and Library Districts to reduce their levy and utilize reserves to help the county keep taxes down while maintaining the critical services Yavapai County residents have come to expect. This year the Flood Control District will raise their levy and regain about half of what was reduced a few years ago. This increase will allow them to continue the important work they do in monitoring and mitigating flood issues.
So what does this mean to you? The Flood Control District portion of the property tax on a home worth $100,000 was $19.14 last year, and this year it will be $23.46. Bourdon said, “Because this is a tax increase, Yavapai County must hold a hearing where the public is invited to ask questions on this issue and voice their opinion.” There will be a hearing during the Board of Supervisors meeting in the Verde Valley on 7/19 and the formal hearing in Prescott on 8/2, where the board will take action on the budget.
In the same $100,000 home scenario mentioned above, the Library District portion of the property tax will be going down from $18.42 to $18.15. This reduction combined with the Primary Property Tax amount, has once again provided for a reduction in the total tax rate. Thurman said “I am very proud to be able to say, this is the third year in a row that this Board has been able to reduce the tax rate in Yavapai County. Keeping your taxes down while doing everything we can to maintain county services is one of our top priorities.”
If you have questions about the budget or would like to voice your opinion, please be sure to attend one of the two meetings that will discuss the 2017-2018 budget in the coming weeks.