West Richland residents will see a nominal reduction in their city property taxes next year, though the total amount the city will collect will increase.
The city council this week unanimously agreed to take a 1 percent increase -- the maximum allowed by law -- on the city's portion of property tax revenue collected next year.
For the owner of a $100,000 home, the city's property tax levy rate will cost $154 next year. That's a $1 less a year than they'll pay for the same home this year.
"The levy rate has actually declined from $1.55 to $1.54 per $1,000 of assessed value," said Jessica Platt, West Richland's finance director. "As the value of the city goes up, the levyrate goes down."
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She said the total value of the community is growing faster than 1 percent. The city's overall assessed value increased 6 percent from 2012.
"In my experience residents sometimes get confused how their property tax dollars are allocated," Platt said. "Of every dollar (of property taxes), about 13 cents goes to the city. The rest goes to the school district, state schools, fire district, the county and the Port of Kennewick."
The new property tax rate will bring an additional $14,274 into the city's coffers.
It'll go into the general fund which is used to pay for streets, parks, public safety, community and economic development and general administration, said Platt.
The increase brings the total estimate for collection in 2014 to $1.5 million, which includes revenue from new construction, estimated at $59,410 next year, she said.
In 2013, the city expects to collect $1.4 million in property taxes.
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