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City’s property tax revenue will dip in 2012 since no rate increase allowed

Port Orchard property owners will see the same tax rate in 2012 as this year, but the city’s property tax revenue will likely drop with property values, Allan Martin, the city’s treasurer, predicts.

Port Orchard property owners currently pay at the maximum rate allowed by law, $3.60 per thousand dollars of assessed property value.

So the city can’t take the

1 percent annual increase that would be otherwise legally allowed, and the taxes it can collect primarily rise and fall based on property value in the city.

The city’s total assessed valuation in 2008 was about $814.6 million, and the levy rate was about 1.9 percent. In 2011, by comparison, the valuation was assessed at $1.3 billion, with a levy rate of 2.1 percent, following several annexations.

Predictions for 2012 are down by about $59 million.

The real estate market isn’t the only major factor impacting the budget, though.

Kitsap Regional Library recently was separated from the city’s budget, and started collecting its portion of the property tax directly. So, the city no longer pays about $430,000 to the library each year.

The budgets are also impacted by annexations.

The city anticipates that the Bethel Corridor will soon annex into the city. It could take up to five months for money from future annexations to get to the city’s budget.

The city also anticipates additional revenue from sales taxes, once the annexations are finalized.

“Will this money show up in 2012?” Olin asked.

“If it’s done in April,” Martin said.

“It will,” Olin said, referring to property in Bethel.

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