The Carroll County Board of Education voted Thursday to tentatively adopt the same millage rate as the previous year.
The board has maintained the same millage rate of 17.998 mills since 2017.
According to Director of Finance Delene Strickland, the current millage would generate 3.81% more tax revenue, compared to the rollback millage rate that was calculated at 17.337 mills.
The action took place during the board’s regular meeting.
After Strickland did an overall review of the millage rate options, none of the board members had any questions. Before voting, a majority of the members made comments favoring keeping the same millage rate.
“If we look out for the children, the money is going to take care of itself,” said board member Bernice Brooks. “We have done an excellent job with the amount of money that has been spent on the students.
“But let us not get beyond what the students need because if it wasn’t for the students, we wouldn’t need teachers. So let us be as conservative as we can, but yet provide the wholeness of all of our children.”
After reviewing all of the millage options — raising the tax rate, keeping the same rate, adopting the rollback or reducing the millage — board member Bryant Turner made a motion to tentatively adopt the millage rate of 17.998 mills. When the vote was called, all board members voted yes.
The board will set a final millage rate when the county’s tax digest, a valuation of all the property in the county, has been calculated.
Although adopting this plan decreases revenue by $1 million, the board agreed it would be the best decision for the students.
The $1 million decrease can be attributed to direct impacts from funding, such as Quality Basic Education (QBE) and equalization.
In the county’s case, the impact will come directly from QBE, with no impact from Equalization. Equalization is funding designed to help equalize funding across the state.
If the board had adopted the rollback millage rate, they would have a $2.3 million decrease attributed from both QBE and Equalization.
According to board members, maintaining the current millage rate will allow them to provide enhanced student learning opportunities and invest in instructional personnel for fiscal year 2021-2022.
The tentative millage rate increase is an increase of 0.661 mills. Without this tentative tax increase, the millage rate would be no more than 17.337 mills.
The proposed tax increase for a home with a fair market value of $200,000 is approximately $50.24, and the proposed tax increase for non-homestead property with a fair market value of $150,000 is approximately $39.66.
The budget adopted by the board requires a millage rate higher than the rollback rate. Therefore, before the board may set a final millage rate, Georgia law requires three public hearings to be held to allow the public an opportunity to express their opinions and/ or concerns on the increase.
The board is scheduled to set the final millage rate on Aug.19.