A proposal for a new countywide millage rate for Macon-Bibb County likely will go before a committee next week.
On Tuesday, Macon-Bibb Mayor Robert Reichert is expected to send an ordinance that eliminates double taxation on former Macon residents to the city-county commission’s Operations and Finance Committee. The issue would be taken up at the Aug. 11 meeting.
The ordinance calls for the end of the Macon City Tax District and would have former city residents paying the same rate -- 14.65 mills -- as people who live in the former unincorporated Bibb County.
Former Macon residents would save $194 on a $100,000 home with the 4.85-mill reduction, according to county officials.
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Reichert is proposing the millage drop to make good on a promise to eliminate the old city millage rate in the first two years of city-county consolidation. This would be the end of the second half of the tax; the first half was eliminated last year.
This proposal comes as property values fall across the county.
The taxable property value in Macon-Bibb County’s new tax digest dropped about 2.5 percent from 2014 to 2015, Macon-Bibb spokesman Chris Floore said. That would require a 14.83 millage rate to bring in the same revenue as last year, but Floore said the mayor wants to hold the line on taxes and is putting forward the 14.65-mill rate instead.
“This is good news for everyone,” he said. “The people who voted for consolidation wanted a smaller government and equitable tax base.”
The administration is confident the ordinance will pass because commissioners in June approved the budget with the same millage rate in an 8-1 vote, he said.
Operations and Finance Committee Chairman Gary Bechtel said Monday that he had not yet reviewed the ordinance, but expects it to move to the full commission. He also said he expects the city-county to eat the lost revenue.
Although property values on average have decreased in Macon-Bibb, some property owners will pay more this year, Bechtel said.
“People’s assessments are individual in nature so they may experience some increase or a decrease in what they pay,” he said.
If the ordinance is approved by the full commission, residents who live in the former Macon city limits will have had their millage rate cut by 9.7 mills since 2014.
Macon homeowner Jasmine Edgar said she has unfairly paid more in taxes than some family members who live in the former unincorporated Bibb County.
“It would be nice to feel like I’m not being taxed more just because I live in a different area of town,” she said.
Even after eliminating the double taxation, the Macon-Bibb government is still a year ahead of a requirement to reduce the budget by 20 percent over a five-year period, Floore said.
To contact writer Stanley Dunlap, call 744-4623.