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Expect property taxes to rise in Medina County

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Most Medina County property owners will see their taxes increase in 2017 because of a countywide reappraisal, levy approvals and a change to state law that shifts more of the tax burden onto them.

The changes were noted Tuesday in a news release from the Medina County Auditor’s Office.

County Auditor Mike Kovack said homeowners in Brunswick Hills Township will see the largest increases because of a 2.5-mill police levy voters passed in November. Homer Township residents also will see taxes rise because a 2.3-mill fire levy was approved.

All property owners in the county, with the exception of Hinckley Township, will see an increase in their tax levies due to the approval of the Medina County Park District’s 1-mill operating levy. Kovack said Hinckley is part of the Cleveland Metroparks.

He said a change in state law passed in 2013 did away with a reimbursement from the state on all new tax levies.

That subsidy, dating to 1971, was intended to compensate homeowners for the state income tax that went into effect that year.

Previously, for all levies, the state paid 12.5 percent of the tax bill. Essentially, for every $100 in taxes raised, the state paid $12.50 and the homeowner paid $87.50.

Now, for all new and replacement levies, the state no longer will pay that share, so that shifts the entire tax onto property owners.

“The change in state law is starting to have a substantial effect in the county,” Kovack said. “It threw off some of our estimates on taxes for the coming year. Previously, with a

10 percent increase in value due to a reappraisal, the homeowner would see about a 2 percent increase in property taxes. The change in state law is now shifting that burden upward.”

Kovack said his research shows that Montville Township continues to have the highest tax rate in the county for 2017, coming in at 67.52 mills.

Medina Township maintains its No. 2 ranking with a millage rate of 66.43 mills.

Lodi now has the third-highest tax rate in the county at 65.12 mills.

The city of Medina is the fourth-highest taxing district at 63.37 mills and Brunswick Hills Township rounds out the top five at 65.39 mills.

Westfield Center has the lowest tax rate in the county at 46.89 mills.

Kovack said tax bills have not been certified by his office. Residents who wish to pay their tax bills before the end of the year — to receive income tax benefits — may pay the same amount as last year’s bill. The credit or deficit then will be shown when tax bills actually are mailed in early to mid-January. The due date for taxes is expected to be early to mid-February.

New values and tax bills are expected to be posted to the auditor’s website the first week of January at medinacountyauditor.org.

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