To The Editor:
It seems that the Wilson County Commission feels the need to raise property taxes in Wilson County anywhere from 10 to 40 cents for anyone who owns property. Now this doesn't sound like a lot on the front end but with the median value of a home in Wilson County being $238,900, a 40-cent increase would add $238.90 per year onto your tax bill.
As Realtors, one of our duties is to make sure that property owners aren't penalized for owning property, and we feel that a hike in property taxes is doing just that.
Yes, we believe that we need great school buildings for our children to attend and have the very best learning environment, which we have. Yes, we believe that our teachers, police and firefighters need to make more money and are typically underpaid for the services that they provide. Yes, we believe that money has to come from somewhere to continue to sustain the growth that we have in our great county.
No, we don't believe that it needs to come from a property tax hike.
We are currently at a great spot with our current tax rate of $2.57 to be competitive with other progressive counties in Middle Tennessee. If our tax rate gets raised 40 cents, there will only be three other counties, out of seven, that have higher tax rates than we will have.
We have been up against this battle many times and have given what we feel are much better options to solving this need.
Apartments are being built throughout the county to accommodate the need for housing for those who either can't buy a home or choose not to buy at this time. Many of them have children in school and use the services that the proposed tax height will go toward.
We have suggested an increase in the car tag renewal. That would raise millions of dollars as well, spread the rate hike more fairly across the masses and not penalize property owners.
If the commissioners are willing to think outside the box for other options, then we can prevent this property tax hike from being a potential deterrent for developers and property owners to stay or come to our great county to call home.
Eastern Middle Tennessee Association of Realtors (EMTAR)