ANeSU communities see tax levies increase

ADDISON COUNTY — Most property owners in the five-town area are seeing higher tax bills than last year.
Selectboards in Bristol, Lincoln, Monkton, New Haven and Starksboro set municipal tax rates in the past month or so to pay for town staffing obligations and highway spending.
Town leaders have also received final homestead and non-residential school tax rates from the state, allowing towns to send out 2014-2015 tax bills. Each of the five towns are served by the Addison Northeast Supervisory Union.
Homeowners may be eligible for income sensitivity prebates set by state education finance statutes, and thus would not be responsible for their entire tax bill. According to the Department of Taxes, more than 60 percent of taxpayers in most towns typically receive prebates.
The Bristol selectboard set the new residential tax rate at $2.3312 per $100 of assessed value, an increase of 10.7 cents from the 2013-2014 rate. That 4.8 percent increase equates to about $107 in new taxes per $100,000 of assessed value.
Bristol’s non-residential school rate increased 9.1 cents, to $2.2751 from $2.184.
The municipal tax rate is also up slightly, up four-tenths of a cent to $0.6236, from $0.6198.
Bristol also has a tax rate for residents living in the one-square-mile police district (essentially most of the village). That rate increased less than a cent, to $0.2930 from $0.2892.
The residential property tax rate in New Haven rose 18.2 cents, more than any of the five towns, to $1.9757. That 10 percent increase translates to about $182 in new taxes per $100,000 of assessed value.
New Haven’s non-residential rate also increased, to the tune of 15.5 cents, up to $1.893 from $1.7377.
The municipal rate is down, albeit by half a cent, to $0.3863 from $0.3920.
The residential property tax rate in Starksboro is up 9.2 cents, to $1.6526 from $1.5611. This 5.8 percent increase translates into about $92 in new taxes per $100,000 of assessed property value.
The non-residential rate also rose, to $1.6201 from $1.5975, an increase of 2.3 cents.
The municipal tax rate increased by eight-tenths of a cent, to $0.4590 from $0.4502.
The residential property tax rate in Monkton rose by 6.1 cents, to $1.9031 from $1.8420. This 3.4 percent increase translates to roughly $61 in new taxes per $100,000 of assessed value.
The non-residential tax rate in town also increased, up 1.8 cents to $2.2886 from $2.2703.
The municipal rate decreased slightly, from $0.5238 to $0.4991, a difference of 2.5 cents.
In Lincoln, the residential property tax rate jumped 17.1 cents, to $2.1584 from $1.9877. This 8.6 percent increase is equal to about $171 in new taxes per every $100,000 of assessed value.
The non-residential rate also increased, this time by 13.3 cents, to $2.1225 from $1.9895. This represents a jump of 6.7 percent.
The municipal rate in Lincoln increased by 7.3 cents, to $0.6392 from $0.5653.
The fiscal year 2014-2015 budget for Mount Abraham Union High School, as approved by voters in March, is $14.1 million. This figure is 2 percent higher than the 2013-2014 budget. The budget for the ANeSU office, which totals $4.8 million, is also higher than the previous fiscal year.
Part of the increased homestead and non-residential rates in the five towns is attributable to higher Mount Abraham and ANeSU budgets, as well as budgets for the five elementary schools in the district. However, these numbers don’t tell the whole story.
ANeSU residents are also shouldering an increased education tax burden because of declining enrollment in the supervisory union. The Agency of Education uses a formula to apportion funds to districts based on enrollment. ANeSU officials expect enrollment to continue to fall for at least the next several years, which will result in less state aid.

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