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County error forces 'redo' for tax hearing
Three meetings set for later this month
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Forsyth County News

Because of an error by Forsyth County, there will be three additional public hearings regarding a property tax increase that commissioners approved about two weeks ago.

According to Chief Financial Officer Bill Thomas, the county placed an incorrect figure in a legal advertisement submitted to the Forsyth County News, which ran June 25 and July 2.

Thomas said the state allows a 3 percent margin of error on a public notice like this one, and since the percentage of net taxes increase for 2008 read 7.16 in the legal advertisement, when it should have read 7.94, it is required that they "redo it" Thomas said.

The county submitted the numbers for the tax increase to the state, which contacted the county to notify officials there was a discrepancy in the advertisements showing the five-year levy history.

"What it comes down to," Thomas said, "is just an error. We'll call it a mulligan. It's just something we missed."

According to a county news release, the additional public hearings will not impact tax bills or the collection of taxes.

At least one resident was happy to hear the news.

"Well, that means I can go to the hearings now," said Roger Payne of Forsyth County, who was not aware of the three public hearings held last month. "Works for me."

The rescheduled public hearings will be held at 3 p.m. Aug. 12, and 11 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Aug. 21, at the Forsyth County Administration Building at 110 E. Main St., Suite 220.

Forsyth County's overall net millage will come in at 23.854 mills after separate decisions by the county commission and school board.

Commissioners approved a resolution specifying the 2008 millage rate after three public hearings on the tax increase last month.

The new proposed bond rate, which at 1.196 mills is more than double the 2007 rate, is a result of the $100 million parks, recreation and green space bond voters approved in February.

A mill is equal to $1 for each $1,000 in assessed property value.

The county's maintenance and operations levy is projected to hold steady at 3.83 mills. Factoring in the school tax increase, however, the net millage is 23.854 mills.

Earlier this year, the Forsyth County Board of Education approved a maintenance and operations millage rate increase from 14.395 to 15.395 mills.