Proposed 78% Property Tax Hike Ignites Frustration In Greenbrier

Proposed 78% Property Tax Hike Ignites Frustration In Greenbrier

GREENBRIER TENNESSEE: (Smokey Barn News) – A proposed 78% tax hike in Greenbrier triggered heated reactions from citizens Monday evening at the city’s monthly meeting.

As you can see in the video above, the recurring theme in the meeting was that citizens want more information.  The city says the money is needed due to growth but citizens want to see a lot more information before they are willing to consider a 78% tax hike. Roughly put, a home with an appraised value of $400,000 carrying city assessed value of $100,000 would see an increase of $830 in property taxes per year.

If it were to pass, the city property tax rate would go from $1.07 to $1.90 per $100 of assessed property value.

The tax rate in Greenbrier in 2017 was $1.07. This year, due to the countywide appraisal, the Certified tax rate, set by the State Board Of Equalization, will come down to $86.3 cents for Greenbrier residents, assuming the city does not vote in an increase.

A large part of the increase is slated to go towards fire protection services. Though the packed meeting was heated, requests put to city leaders for more information stayed mostly civil and included questions like; “Why do we need a full-time fire department?” – “How many calls to they go on?” “How many fires a week do we have?” However, one resident did ask for Mayor Dawson to step down, adding, “y’all are killing Greenbrier.”

Another resident asked; “Is there anybody that’s in here that’s for the tax?” The reply from the room was no surprise. “No!” Several other residents suggested that the city try to find alternative or creative sources to fund the fire department.

One thing that did not come up in the meeting, if Greenbrier upgrades its fire protection services the city’s fire “ISO” rating would also likely improve. If so, insurance rates for most property owners would come down offsetting a portion of the tax increase.

In the end, Mayor Bonnette Dawson deferred the vote to August 6th. The board plans to meet next Monday on July 9th to discuss the budget.

Here’s our news partner WKRN NEWS 2’s take on the story.

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