Monday, December 23, 2019

Town Council recap of Dec 4, 2019: Tax rate set at $14.51

The most significant item of this meeting was the tax classification hearing which functionally closes out the operating budget cycle for FY 2020. The operating budget cycle closes with the setting of the rate to confirm and authorize the funding required to cover the priorities set during the operating budget cycle.

The capital budget for FY 2020 uses free cash from the FY 2019 year and has recently been reviewed with the Finance Committee. The Town Council will be reviewing the capital budget recommendation at one of their January 2020 meetings.

The tax rate is set for FY 2020 at $14.51 per thousand of assessed value. This rate is down $.15 from the rate set for FY 2019 ($14.66). The growth in the community from the housing and commercial expansion we see all around us is the primary factor for the drop in rate. Yes, the operational expenses continue to increase but the total amount required is spread among a larger group (expanded by growth) so we get to pay less than if we had no growth or expansion.

The chart shown here depicts this fact. As the change in assessed value increases, the rate goes down. As the change in assessed value decreases, the rate goes up. 
Franklin, MA - Net Change in Valuation (Million) vs. Tax Rate (Percent)
Franklin, MA - Net Change in Valuation (Million) vs. Tax Rate (Percent)

While some folks say we should stop growth, that would doom us to paying more and a higher percent of taxes every year. With proper growth (affordable, for one), the growth helps to spread the tax burden.

The official Action Taken document can be found online

The meeting video is available for replay on demand
The audio portion of the Town Administrator Jamie Hellen's Report to the Town Council was released previously

Additional details from the meeting can be found in my notes captured during the meeting:
  • Live reporting: Town Administrator's Report through Closing
  • Live reporting: Legislation for Action
  • Live reporting: Tax Classification Hearing
  • Live reporting: Town Council - Dec 4, 2019

No comments:

Post a Comment