Rockland sets property tax rate with slight increase

Posted Aug. 12, 2013, at 8:09 p.m.

ROCKLAND, Maine — Property owners will be paying a few dollars more in taxes for the upcoming year.

Rockland set its tax rate Monday at $19.52 per $1,000 of assessed property, which is 10 cents more than the rate set in 2012.

The increase is due solely to increased payments the city has to make to Regional School Unit 13 and Knox County, said Assessor Dennis Reed.

A person owning a home assessed at $150,000 would pay an additional $15 in property taxes, increasing the annual cost to $2,928. The first half of the payment is due Sept. 27 and the second half is due March 7.

The Rockland City Council had made it a goal this year to prevent a tax increase. Last month in the face of reduced state revenue sharing, councilors voted to cut four positions and reduced two other posts to part-time.

Of the nearly $15.4 million in property taxes to be billed, $7.7 million will be for RSU 13, $7 million for the city, and about $700,000 for Knox County.

The tax rate is based on the assumption that the currently proposed Regional School Unit 13 budget is adopted. The budget would require an additional $122,000 in property taxes from Rockland.

The school budget goes before voters in the six communities of RSU 13 on Tuesday. The city council voted last week to oppose the budget because of the impact on Rockland. The St. George Selectboard has urged its voters to approve the school budget.

The city’s largest taxpayer is FMC Corporation, which has a manufacturing plant on Lime Street that produces carrageenan, used in food processing. FMC paid $435,000 in taxes last year to the city.

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