County’s taxable valuation up for sixth straight year

The taxable valuation in Greene County continues its upward trend, with a total increase of 4.26 percent for fiscal year 2021. This is the sixth consecutive year the total taxable valuation has increased, with the largest one-year increase being 4.51 percent for FY20, the current fiscal year.

Pam Olerich, real estate and tax coordinator in the county auditor’s office, provided figures to the county supervisors at their organizational meeting Jan. 2.

Taxable valuation in the county’s urban areas increased 5.58 percent to $202,477,562. Taxable valuation of rural property increased 3.74 percent to $511,969,590. The county’s total taxable valuation is $714,447,152.

Junction and Paton townships saw the largest increase of the county’s 15 townships, due to MidAmerican Energy wind turbines. The taxable valuation in Junction Township increased 7.86 percent, up to $84,473,458. The taxable valuation in Paton Township increased 5.07 percent, up to $41,182,120.

Valuation increases in general slowed in other rural areas. A year ago, Greenbrier Township had the smallest increase at 3.1 percent. This year Greenbrier once again saw the smallest increase at 1.97 percent. Grant, Jackson, Scranton and Washington townships, along with Junction and Paton townships, are the only townships with increases more than 3 percent.

The county’s towns all include some property classified as rural. Those total values all increased except for within the city of Jefferson. That value lost 0.12 percent, primarily because there is less property classified as rural. The land Greene County Schools owns for the career academy/high school is no longer classified as rural, along with the site of the new Jefferson Veterinary Clinic and the crematorium.

The rural value in the city of Dana increased 34.46 percent, again due to wind turbines.

The cities of Grand Junction and Rippey saw double-digit increases in taxable valuation, with Grand Junction increasing 16.49 percent to $14,319,934, and Rippey increasing 11.17 percent to $5,002,611. The increase in Jefferson is the smallest at 4.26 percent, up to $145,779,197.

Looking at the county’s school districts, total taxable valuation in the Greene County district is up 4.62 percent to $532,292,361. Total taxable valuation in the Paton-Churdan district increased 3.73 percent to $122,235,134. (Due to the complex school finance formula and the various sources of school funding, an increase in property values does not mean the schools will have more revenue.)

The total taxable value of property subject to tax increment financing for FY21 is $34,155,791, more than double what is being used in the current year. The increase includes $5,062,680 in rural property, which is within the TIF district the county created to pay on the general obligation urban renewal notes sold for construction of the regional career academy.

The remaining $29,093,111 is in the city of Jefferson. That has increased by $11 million compared to last year.

Olerich explained the approximately $34 million is valuation, not tax revenue. That amount of valuation will generate the tax revenue needed to pay interest and principal on debt. The city of Jefferson requested an increased amount of valuation from which to retain the increment to pay on general obligation bonds sold last summer.

If no taxing entities used TIF, the total valuation used to compute levy rates would be $34,155,781 more.

The taxable valuation is the first number used to figure levy rates required to meet the county’’s revenue needs. The supervisors and auditor Jane Heun will have the FY21 budget (July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021) completed in March.

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