Charlotte Homeowners Fear Huge Tax Spikes After Revaluation
CHARLOTTE, N.C. —
Homeowners in some of Charlotte's most expensive neighborhoods said Wednesday evening they're afraid of huge spikes in their taxes after hearing from city and county leaders at the first public meeting on the property revaluation process.
"It's going to be thousands of dollars for me," said Norman Fortson, referring to the tax increase he expects.
Local leaders answered questions from dozens of homeowners in Myers Park, Dilworth and SouthPark.
Mecklenburg County will soon mail out new property assessments that are expected to show the value of most homes has increased since 2003 despite the economic recession.
County commissioners will set the tax rate when they approve the budget in June.
They could chose to lower the base tax rate to compensate for rising home values. That would leave the county with the same revenue base as 2010 and increase taxes only for those homeowners whose property values have risen the most.
Commissioners could also choose to leave the tax rate at the current level or increase the tax rate, both of which would result in tax hikes for many more homeowners.
"My guess, at this point -- it's very unlikely we'll lower the rate," said County Commission chair Jennifer Roberts.
Roberts said since Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is facing a $100 million shortfall, she can't rule anything out.
"There are going to be unhappy people. We have to prepare for that," said Roberts.
"You work hard to live in a nice area, and then you get taxed at a rate that's really hard to swallow," said Bob Brownridge, who lives in Barclay Downs near SouthPark Mall.
County commissioners will hold a three-day retreat at the end of January to analyze budget projections.