18-cent property tax looms for Bartlett - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

18-cent property tax looms for Bartlett

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BARTLETT, Tenn. (FOX13) -

By many standards, the city of Bartlett is considered a quiet suburb of Memphis with good schools, parks, very little crime.

"I think I rather not pay more taxes, but I understand, I understand the logic," said George Hale, Bartlett resident. "I got the advantage of a lower appraisal, so I guess I get the disadvantage of a higher tax."

Mayor McDonald's administration is recommending an 18-cent property tax rate increase, after the recent reappraisals came in lower.

"We have too many taxes already," said Kenny Taliaferro. "No I don't agree with it."

"I would like to see it go toward the schools," added John Cooley. "Bartlett is a nice area and I love living here so if it's helping pay for the nice flowers, clean streets, keep crime down, hey I'll pay."

The 18-cent hike from the current $1.49 would increase the property tax rate to $1.67 per $100 of assessed value.

"I think the schools, the money going toward the schools would be the best thing at least if its going toward like police and the fire department that would be good," said Catherine Crismon, a former resident of Bartlett.

Mayor McDonald says the funding for the schools is in place, after voters approved a half-cent sales tax increase in August 2012. Even though reappraisals came in lower than expected most residents are still mixed on the idea of a property tax rate increase.

"A lot of people can't afford it, a lot of people don't even have jobs and I know my daughter is having to work two to make ends meet," said Betty Lyon, resident.

"I'm new to Bartlett. It's a really good city," said Cynthia Phipps. "The police are really good and I think if they need the money right now then they should get it."

The problem is when the reappraisals are complete it affects the revenues in a city's coffers - which pay for fire, police, roads, parks and a number of other community services. Even with this understanding, taxpayers in Bartlett may not be pleased with the proposal. Yet most are also willing to look at the recommendation to keep this community as it is - quiet, crime free with good schools.

The rate increase is expected to come up Tuesday at Bartlett's Board of Aldermen meeting. The board also will look at increasing the solid waste fee $2 from $22 to $24 a month.

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