Property tax increases loom for six Cache communities

Despite the statewide recession resulting from the coronavirus outbreak, six communities in Cache County have signaled their intent to raise property taxes.

CACHE COUNTY – The Utah Taxpayers Association says “never raise taxes during a recession,” but six Cache County communities aren’t listening.

The local cities now signaling their intent to raise property taxes are Lewiston, Nibley, North Logan, Richmond, Smithfield and Wellsville.

“A cardinal rule during a recession is not to raise taxes,” according to a July 3 UTA report released by Rusty Cannon, the watchdog group’s vice-president. “In an unprecedented recession like the one that Utah … is suffering through, this rule is more important than ever.”

The Utah Taxpayers Association is a non-profit group that works to make Utah a more attractive place to live and work by helping to limit state and local taxes.

Since mid-March, the bombshell of the coronavirus outbreak has sent disastrous ripples through Utah’s economy. More than 125,000 Utahns have been furloughed or laid off. Schools and businesses have been closed. The state’s tourism, restaurant and entertainment industries have been devastated. The supply chains of manufacturers have been disrupted. Families are concerned about loss of income and pending bills as unemployment reaches heights not seen since the Great Recession of 2009.

“With all this in mind,” Cannon argued, “any entity proposing to not only maintain budgets from previous years, but raise property taxes … at this time is tone deaf.”

On the Cache County website, the Auditor’s Office has translated the proposed local municipal tax increases into dollar and cents terms.

The proposed hike by Lewiston officials, for example, from the current rate of 0.002198 to 0.002288 would raise the yearly taxes on the average property worth $222,000 by $10.98 for a residential property and $19.98 for a commercial property.

In Nibley, the proposed hike from the current rate of 0.001620 to 0.001667 would raise the yearly taxes on the average property worth $305,000 by $7.88 for a residential property and $14.34 for a commercial property.

The proposed hike by North Logan, however, would raise property taxes from the current rate of 0.001358 to 0.001493. That would increase the yearly taxes on the average property worth $402,000 by $29.84 for a residential property and $54.27 for a commercial property.

Meanwhile, in Richmond, the proposed tax increase from the current rate of 0.001292 to 0.001367 would raise the yearly taxes on the average property worth $253,000 by $10.44 for a residential property and $18.97 for a commercial property.

In Smithfield, the proposed increase would raise the property tax rate from the current rate of 0.001497 to 0.001674. That would increase the yearly taxes on the average property worth $306,000 by $29.78 for a residential property and $54.16 for a commercial property.

Finally, the hike proposed by Wellsville officials from the current rate of 0.000910 to 0.000949 would raise the yearly taxes on the average property worth $301,000 by $6.46 for a residential property and $11.74 for a commercial property.

Under the Truth-in-Taxation Law enacted in 1985, Cannon emphasized, the governing body of any local taxing entity is required to justify any property tax increase during a hearing to which taxpayers are invited.

The public hearings to explain the proposed local property tax increases are slated for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 18 in Lewiston; 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 27 in Nibley; 6:35 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 5 in North Logan; 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 25 in Richmond; 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 12 in Smithfield; and, 6:15 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 6 in Wellsville.

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1 Comment

  • Voter July 13, 2020 at 2:29 pm Reply

    You missed one. Logan City’s website shows a truth in taxation hearing on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, at 6 pm.

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