The Dekalb county commission just raised property taxes 26% to cover the county’s budget deficit. As a result Dekalb County residents will suffer a 50 million dollar tax increase even as their property values have declined. In exchange for that $50 million Dekalb residents won’t receive any additional services or benefits and are already being warned that the higher taxes still may not be enough.
Residents also will need more money. The new incorporated tax rate is 21.21 mills. The tax hike adds $93 a year to the tax bill on the average home, which dropped in value since last year.
But tax bills increase far more where home values have remained the same, with a $420 increase, for instance, on a home that remained at $300,000.
Those kinds of hikes will hit northern and central DeKalb particularly hard, because many home values there barely dropped. Commissioner Elaine Boyer, who represents northern DeKalb, called the tax hike a “slap in the face” for her constituents.
Boyer, who with May and Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton voted against the budget, said she also worried that without long-term forecasting, no one could say another tax hike won’t be needed next year.
Dekalb taxpayers are the only Georgia residents other than those in Fulton County that already have to pay a 1% sales tax to support MARTA. The new $50 million tax increase makes it less likely those same residents will choose to pay another 1% for transportation every time they spend their hard earned money.
The coffin nails are starting to add up at what be an alarming rate for those people determined to raise taxes in Georgia and proponents of the transportation tax increase know it. That is why they are moving the vote to a time when more tax and spend Democrats will likely be voting.
But even tax and spend Democrats have a limit to what they can tolerate. One must wonder if even Dekalb County Democrats may reach that limit before the transportation tax increase comes up for a vote.