(Source: WillcoxRangeNews): Carol Broeder
With its unanimous vote, the Willcox City Council approved a 2-percent city property tax increase for the coming year.
“The tax on a home valued at $100,000 will total $127.45 for the city, which is only a minimal increase of $2.88 from the prior year. Therefore, our calculations are the smallest amount we could increase the rates by,” said Crystal Hadfield, the city’s finance director. “The total annual revenue increase is $466.”
Prior to the vote at the July 20 meeting, Councilman Sam Lindsey asked about secondary property taxes, to which Willcox City Manager Ted Soltis replied, “Next year, we will not be levying a secondary property tax.”
Tax revenues from the secondary tax levy may only be used only to pay the principal and interest on voter-approved obligation bonds.
On March 9, 2004, Willcox voters approved $1.5 million in bonds for municipal improvements, including a police facility, administrative facilities, library improvements and a community meeting room.
While the city paid off the 2004 bond during its new fiscal year, “we have to still levy the amount we just paid plus interest. We pay in advance and receive monies throughout the year,” Hadfield said.
The city did not have to hold a (levy) Truth in Taxation hearing as, each year, it is allowed an increase of 2 percent over the previous year’s maximum allowable rate.
Tax levies are based on the city’s assessed primary and secondary property valuations as determined by Cochise County. The tax bills that Willcox property owners receive from the county also include taxes from several other taxing districts, including the county, the school, hospital, library and fire districts.