Brookfield voters overwhelmingly chose to schedule the first 2012-13 budget referendum for Tuesday, May 15. Voters also chose to vote on a single budget — — in a hand vote that appeared to be 2-1 in favor of supporting .
The represents a 2.63 percent increase in spending over the 2011-12 year and, with current revenue projections, a 2 percent increase to the mill rate, from 24.06 to 24.54.
This year’s mill rate, 24.06, was adjusted from 19.94 after the 2011 revaluation, which has an added affect for residential properties.
“When we did the revaluation the result was that the homes in our town went down approximately 20.2 percent but the commercial only went down 11.5 percent,” resulting in a 17 percent decrease in the town’s Grand List, Board of Finance (BOF) Chairman Jerry Friedrich explained to the 200 registered voters and property owners in attendance. “We’re looking at this very carefully, we think that about two-thirds of you will get a tax decrease.”
(Find your new and prior year assessment, plug it into the calculator on the town website and see how your property taxes would be affected.)
The lower rate of decrease on the commercial side means that residential properties will bear a lesser share of the tax burden than in previous years.
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“If your house value went down by 20 percent or more, your house taxes will go down, period,” First Selectman Bill Davidson said.
“If you’re in or around just 20 percent, your tax bill may be a break even or just slightly higher because we will all pay a slightly higher tax on our cars,” he continued, as the mill rate will go up evenly on vehicles. “But if you have a 21, 22, 24 percent reduction in your house values, you will have a reduction” in your tax bill.
Voters will have their say on the budget in two weeks, with voting open at Brookfield High School (BHS) and Huckleberry Hill Elementary School (HHES) from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Contact the Registrars of Voters with questions about polling districts or the voting process.