Dunwoody city officials may collect more tax revenue than expected and they’re not sure what do to about it.
The value of all taxable property in Dunwoody is rising this year.
If the city continues the 2.74-mill tax rate it has levied since the city’s start, the city will collect about $211,000 more in taxes in 2013 than 2012, the city said.
At a public hearing June 12, members of Dunwoody City Council were divided on how to handle the extra money.
Councilman Doug Thompson proposed a tax cut to 2.68 mills.
“I think it’s time we started thinking about lowering the millage,” Thompson said.
But Councilman Denis Shortal argued the city had many paving and sidewalk projects that needed the money.
“We’ve got so many capital requirements,” Shortal said. “I think the prudent thing to do is stick right where we are and fix the things we’ve got.”
In 2013, Dunwoody is seeing an increase in the total value of taxable property within its borders, compared to last year.
Here’s how the city’s gross tax values have changed over the past five years:
2009: $3.02 billion
2010: $3.07 billion
2011: $2.84 billion
2012: $2.70 billion
2013: $2.73 billion
Source: city of Dunwoody
And Councilwoman Lynn Deutsch counseled caution, saying she expected many Dunwoody homeowners would appeal their higher tax assessments, which could result in a decline in tax revenue.
“Given this is the first time we’ve had an increase, it may not stick,” Deutsch said.
The council has no experience handling a tax windfall created by a rise in assessments.
City Finance Director Chris Pike said Dunwoody’s tax digest – the total value of taxable property in the city – has dropped in previous years.
In 2013, the gross digest rises to $2.73 billion, up from $2.70 billion in 2012, according to a notice of property tax increase published by the city. But the gross digest has declined from $3 billion in 2009, the city said in its notice.
The city has held its tax rate at 2.74 mills since 2009. Taxes are determined by multiplying the millage times the assessed value of a property.
If the council holds the tax rate for 2013 at 2.74 mills, the city receives a total of about $5.9 million in revenue, up about $211,000 over 2012, the city reported.
The city held its first public hearing on the proposed tax rate on June 12. Additional hearings are set for June 25 at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. The hearings will be held at Dunwoody City Hall, 41 Perimeter Center East.
Dunwoody City Council is scheduled to vote on the final 2013 tax rate on June 25.