The Monroe City Council in Sevier County is moving forward with a plan to increase city property taxes by 100 percent. It's the first time in 35 years an increase will come to the city.
The money will be used to update and improve the streets. The property tax increase will only affect the city’s portion of property taxes, according to City Councilman Michael Mathie.
He says the primary concern the city receives from citizens is about the road conditions. It's become a primary concern for Mayor Johnny Parsons as well.
At a public hearing held on Tuesday, Mathie says most of the comments about the proposed increase were positive, despite the fact that a 100 percent increase sounds bad at first.
“As people have understood that the amount equates to less than $15 a month for almost all of our residents, that became a much more feasible number for them to consider,” Mathie says. “We’ve had a lot more positive response as we’ve been able to communicate with people on the actual project and the feasibility.”
The city will now apply for a Grant Loan Package from the Community Impact Board Fund (CIB). They are hoping for a 70 percent grant and 30 percent loan to cover the project’s costs.
The money from the tax increase will be used to pay off the loan.
According to Mathie, the total estimated cost of the project is $5,000,000.