New Haven tax rate increases by 8%

NEW HAVEN — An unusually high one-time payment to square up educational property taxes has led to a jump in the New Haven municipal tax rate.
Last March, voters approved general fund spending of $702,749, a decrease of 2.7%. At the same time, they also approved a one-time school payment of $390,000.
Barb Torian, who was town treasurer at the time, explained the payment in New Haven’s 2019 Town Report.
“The School unification, changes in the state billing system, and a higher Grand List have generated more tax dollars than in the past which created a higher-than-normal surplus which belonged to the state,” Torian wrote. “The state true up has become significantly large and will now be budgeted for in order to cover the liability that we have been able to handle in the past.”
The impact of that payment on the town tax rate, as discussed in February, was $0.13 per $100 of assessed property value, selectboard Chair Steve Dupoise told the Independent in an email this week.
In July the selectboard set the FY 2020 municipal tax rate at 50.67 cents per $100, an increase of 8.74 cents, or 20.8%. 
The increase follows a 44.5% increase last year, but because the tax rate declined in 2017 and again in 2018, the five-year rate increase is 29.9%.
New Haven’s residential education tax rate for FY 2020 increased by 7.97 cents, or 4.7%, to $1.7775.
The nonresidential education tax rate increased by 7.19 cents, or 4.3%, to $1.7410.
The total property tax rate for New Haven residents is $2.2842, an increase of 16.71 cents, or 7.9%. The nonresidential overall rate increased by 15.93 cents, or 7.6%, to $2.2477.
New Haven’s common level of appraisal (CLA), as reported by the Vermont Department of Taxes, decreased by 1.99 points to 93.51.
Residents paying on the full value of their property will see an increase of $167.10 per $100,000 of assessed value. Of that, $87.40 is attributable to the municipal tax increase. Nonresidents will see a total increase of $159.30 per $100,000 of assessed value.
New Haven residents who pay based on their incomes are very likely to receive prebates for a portion of their school tax bills, and some will also receive municipal tax credits.
In 2019, three-quarters of New Haven residents received education tax credits, according to the Vermont Department of Taxes.
Last year, 419 of the town’s 560 house sites received credits totaling $699,172, or an average of $1,669.
In addition, there were 28 New Haven recipients of municipal tax credits, which averaged $226.
Taxes are due Oct. 1.

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