Taxpayers could see an increase in property taxes

Tue, 09/16/2008 - 4:12pm
By: John Thompson

The state’s fiscal crisis has a chance of hitting Fayette’s residents in their wallets.

Governor Sonny Purdues’s pledge not to send local governments Homeowner Tax Relief Grant money is sending a shiver through tax offices across the state as tax commissioners are trying to figure out how the loss of funds would affect the county’s coffers.

Tax Commissioner George Wingo said Monday that Fayette would stand to lose $5.7 million in funds if the governor is successful in his efforts. The biggest loser would be $3.7 million slated for the Fayette County Board of Education, followed by Fayette County, which would lose about $1.5 million in funds.

If the governor gets his way, Wingo said, the county would either have to send out new bills or an additional bill. He estimated the impact on the average taxpayer as an additional $220 to $260 above the current tax bill.

But Wingo is optimistic.

“I think the first thing the General Assembly is going to do when they convene in January is make sure the local governments get their money,” he said.

Wingo has been in contact with Fayette’s legislators, who have all vowed to fight for the funds. Traditionally, the county receives the credited funds by the middle of January, but Wingo said it would not be a problem if the funds were delayed until February.

“We’re optimistic the legislature will do the right thing,” he added.

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