The 2021-2022 property tax rate has been set by the town assessor, committed on Aug. 12. The Town of Scarborough’s new tax rate is now set at $15.02 per $1,000 of property value for the 2022 fiscal year, which runs from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022. The new rate applies to the taxes due on Oct. 15, 2021 and March 15, 2022. Fall tax bills were sent out in mid-August, shortly following the final tax rate being set.

The new rate is up $0.16 over the prior rate of $14.86. This relatively stable 1.08 percent increase from last year remains lower than was estimated at the time of budget approval in June. The Town Council-approved budget projected a 2.78 percent increase which would have yielded a tax rate of $15.27, with the possibility of lowering that to $15.17 if additional school aid funding came in.

A variety of factors led to a final tax rate that was ultimately lower than all projections. Firstly, the General Purpose Aid (GPA) funding for schools was received in July. In June, the Town Council approved that if these additional funds were received, 50 percent would be allocated to lower the local contributions to education funding (providing property tax relief) and the remaining 50 percent would be allocated to a School Capital Reserve Fund.

The final tax rate is also lower than was anticipated due to actual values exceeding estimated values. During the budget approval process, some of the numbers that were used in the projected Tax Rate Computation were only estimated numbers. One number that gets incorporated into the final calculation is the Total Taxable Valuation, or the assessed value of all real estate and personal property in Town, less eligible exemptions. The Taxable Valuation, and the increase of its value from last year, was notably higher than projected. This was primarily due to greater-than-estimated value resulting from new construction and development in Town. The mid-range estimated value that was used during the budget approval process was $4,817,230,976 — a $90 million increase from Fiscal Year 2021. In reality, at the time of commitment the actual taxable value was $4,845,682,776 — a $118.45 million increase from Fiscal Year 2021.

While the increase in Total Taxable Valuation helped to more broadly disperse the tax burden among property owners, a couple actual revenue amounts (adjusted from the initial budget projections) contributed to reducing the Total Net Budget. The BETE (Business Equipment Tax Exemption) Reimbursement amount received from the State was estimated at $621,612. The actual amount received will be $786,133. The State Municipal Revenue Sharing amount was higher than estimated as well (final amount = $2,950,000 vs. budget estimate = $2,795,056).

The tax rate is determined by taking the total Tax Levy (combined municipal, school, and county budgets minus all revenues) and dividing it by the total Taxable Valuation. In short, Tax Levy/Taxable Valuation = Tax Rate. Part of finalizing the total taxable valuation entails the Assessing department reviewing properties each year as of April 1st, the state-mandated assessment date, for any changes prior to finalizing assessments. 2021 assessments and property details are available on the town’s online database. Please note that because assessments are as of April 1, any changes to a property since then (including changes in ownership) will not be reflected online.

The annual tax bill for each property is calculated by multiplying the taxable value by the tax rate. For example, a home valued at $300,000 would owe $4,506 in property taxes for fiscal year 2022 (300,000 x 0.01502 = $4,506).

Although assessments have been finalized, property owners are always welcome to review their property information and reach out to our Assessing Department with any questions. Contact us at (207) 730-4060, email [email protected], or visit our office on the lower level of Town Hall.

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