Funding Changes Could Increase Property Taxes

Bismarck, ND – A lot of people will see above-average property tax increases next year.

These are preliminary numbers because 2018 budgets have not been finalized yet.

Dunn County says people there are actually looking at a 4 % decrease. That’s because new pipeline projects have increased the county’s taxable property value from about $58 million to $72 million. So the county can lower property taxes and still bring in enough money.

Ward County is not as lucky…it’s expecting a 13% increase. It’s county auditor said that is in large part due to dropping property values.

In Burleigh County, you could see about a 10 percent increase in property taxes. That’s for a number of different reasons, including some recent changes at the state level.

Burleigh County Sheriff Pat Heinert will likely see a larger budget next year.

“The budget request itself for 2018 is $8.5 million to operate the jail facility,” he said.

26% of that will come from Morton County to help operate the new jail. Part of that budget is for 11 new jobs for detention officers.

“Three of those immediately the first of the year, and then 8 on July 1st,” Heinert said.

Another major project that will effect property taxes is all of the construction going on at Bismarck middle schools. That’s something voters approved in a special election earlier this year.

The bond issue will increase Bismarck Public School’s mill  request by 3.51%. Add that to a 2.83% request due to valuation increase, and the district is asking for a more than 6% increase.

But perhaps the biggest change was made at the state level when lawmakers decided to stop it’s 12% property tax buydown.

“With the decrease in the oil revenue that had to go away,” Heinert, who is also a state representative, said.

Instead the state will help fund social services.

“It’s a significant move because it’s going to reduce our property taxes,” he added.

But that won’t likely fully offset, leaving counties looking for other ways to find more funds.

Burleigh, Dunn and Ward Counties will all hold final budget meetings over the next couple of weeks.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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