Washington Co. to increase property tax for school funding

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WASHINGTON COUNTY, TN (WJHL) – Residents of Washington County, Tennessee may soon see a significant increase in their property tax.

The Washington County Commission has agreed on eleven important projects to address what they are calling ‘capital needs’ for the county.

These projects focus on education and taking the necessary steps to improve school facilities.

The funding of these projects is expected to require a 40 cent property tax increase, raising the current rate of $1.98 to $2.38.

This would increase the property tax by $150 a year for property worth $150,000.

Mayor Dan Eldridge says that while a tax increase is not ideal, these funds provide a recurring stream of revenue to pay for the long-term capital needs of Washington County.

“I don’t like the idea of a 40 cent tax increase,” Eldridge said, “I don’t think that any of the county commissioners like the idea of a 40 cent tax increase. But quite frankly, the county commission has its back against the wall right now. They don’t have a lot of options. The needs are very real. The needs have to be met.”

Eldridge said the long-term benefits of these projects will make the property tax increase worth it.

“We want to be able to attract better jobs. We want to grow the tax base, and ultimately to provide a better quality of life for the people of Washington County. And all of this is the result of building on the plan that we are talking about right now.”

The next step for the county commission is to put together a capital investment plan that provides a strategy for accomplishing these projects.Copyright 2016, WJHL, All Rights Reserved.

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