Saturday, January 28, 2012

Property Tax Rate Comparisons for 2012: Southbridge Still Highest Locally

Ken O'Brien

Last year I prepared a comparison of Southbridge‘s property tax rate relative to other local communities.
Below is the updated list for Fiscal Year 2012, as well as the prior data from FY 2011.
Those who wish to denigrate these comparisons will throw up the same old tired argument that it’s not the rate that matters.
Stop to consider that a rate of $17.83 per thousand is a percentage. In other words, you’re being charged 1.78% of the value of your home. That’s no different than saying that you’re paying the same percentage as somebody who can afford a $500,000 home. Isn’t the person who owns a $500,000 home more capable of paying 1.78% than the person who can only afford a $120,000 home?
In other words, should the person who makes only $40,000 per year pay the same percentage of their income in taxes as the person who makes $200,000 per year? It ultimately boils down to the same thing.
Furthermore, if you look at other communities with higher home values, is your 1.78 percent equivalent to the 1.76% of a home’s value that they are paying in Sturbridge?
FY 2012 Property Tax Rates
Rates per $1,000 of assessed valuation
(All communities have a single tax classification except Webster)

Southbridge                $17.83
Brimfield                     $14.48
Brookfield                   $16.45
Charlton                      $12.00
Dudley                         $10.90
East Brookfield           $14.22
Holland                       $15.18
Spencer                       $12.28
Sturbridge                   $17.63
Webster                       $11.78 (Residential) $18.47 (Comm’l & Industrial)

FY 2011 Property Tax Rates

Rates per $1,000 of assessed valuation
(All communities have a single tax classification except Webster)
Southbridge                $17.14
Brimfield                     $13.86
Brookfield                   $14.51
Charlton                      $11.57
Dudley                        $10.56
East Brookfield           $13.85
Holland                       $14.58
Spencer                       $11.07
Sturbridge                   $16.19
 Webster                     $11.16 (Residential) $17.92 (Comm’l & Industrial)
(Source: Massachusetts Dept. of Revenue – Division of Local Services)

7 comments:

  1. Ridiculous! Chris Clark's Town Manager's office alone is pulling in a half million dollars in salaries off this BS. Would like to see a water and sewer rate hike chart next. No wonder all the businesses are leaving here and we've got only garbage coming in.

    Hey Southbridge, just remember that three of the councilors who have orchestrated this tax and spend government are up for reelection this June:

    Denise Clemence
    Larry Spinelli
    Dave Livengood

    Kick these tax-loving bums out and let's get this town back on the right track!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Big Jim:
    As I pointed out in the article before this, Mike Marketti has a nice analysis of the sewer and water rates at:
    http://www.marketticartoons.com/Water-Sewer_Rates.html

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ken, come on! You should be writing about how, with the seven stooges help, Southbridge is finally number 1 at something!

    ReplyDelete
  4. As someone (a highly intelligent woman) in Sturbridge pointed out to me today, Sturbridge also has the Community Preservation Act 3% surcharge, which is over and above its existing property $17.63 tax rate. That surcharge isn't going away until the debt service is paid in 2030!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow what a wonderful thing to be known for. Southbridge holding the title of having the highest tax rate in the area. This is something that the TOWN COUNCIL should be ashamed of. We use to be proud of that fact that we had one of the lowest tax rates compared to area towns. Come on Southbridge wake up, people are losing their houses, their jobs, and bank accounts they can no longer afford to live here. Don't blame the Town manager, blame the TOWN COUNCIL the final say is with them.. They could stop it if the WANTED to...The question to the council do you want to.

    ReplyDelete
  6. aka Jester

    I recall being astonished when banks 1st began offering heating oil loans.

    What’s next....Property Tax Loans?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Any way to publish a list of town employees in each department
    and what the salaries are? How many live out of town and don't
    pay taxes here. I know the TM, Police, Fire and DPW director
    are out of towners. Don't we have any qualified people living in town
    anymore? Also, with the fire chief living in webster does that
    make us a call fire department?

    ReplyDelete

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