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Rising property values = more income in Flowery Branch, but what about impact on taxes?
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Flowery Branch City Hall - photo by Scott Rogers

With property values rising, Flowery Branch residents might see their tax bills jump as well.

The city is proposing to keep the 2023 tax rate the same at 3.264 mills, with 1 mill equal to $1 for each $1,000 in assessed property value. Flowery Branch taxes property at 40% of its assessed value.

However, property values have increased to the extent that the city would have to reduce the tax rate to 2.664 mills to keep revenues the same. General fund tax revenues are $2.2 million this budget year and are projected to be $2.8 million in fiscal 2024, which begins July 1.

Flowery Branch taxes

What: Public hearings on proposed 2023 tax rate in Flowery Branch

When: 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. June 8 and 6 p.m. June 15

Where: City Hall, 5410 Pine St.

At the lower rate, the owner of a home assessed at $400,000 would pay $426.24 in property taxes. At the current rate, taxes would be $522.24, a 22% difference.

The noteworthy thing for homeowners is that their tax bill would remain the same if their assessed value hasn’t changed. Likewise, if your value has increased, your taxes will rise, and if your value has dropped, your taxes will do the same.

But with Hall County in what has been called the hottest housing market in the U.S., many residents are seeing home prices and values climbing.

Data provided by the tax assessor’s office indicates that 3,982 residential single family units were sold in Hall County last year for an average price of $431,163.

And Flowery Branch is rapidly growing. Recently released U.S. Census Bureau estimates show the city growing from 9,512 in 2020 to 10,938 in 2022, a 15% increase.

And that translates into more expenses for the city.

A report from Finance Director Matt Hamby shows the city needs six new police officers, which means six new patrol cars and equipment for each officer. A 6% increase in pay for city staff also is proposed.

“Flowery Branch will be a desired, charming destination that is a caring, safe community filled with opportunity and a vibrant quality of life,” Hamby states as the mission of the fiscal 2024 budget.

Because the city isn’t proposing to reduce the tax rate to 2.664 mills, it’s required to hold public hearings.

Those hearings are set for 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. June 8 and 6 p.m. June 15 at City Hall, 5410 Pine St. The budget and tax rate are set for adoption at the June 15 meeting.