Behind Covington’s tax rate cut: Rates are lowest on record, real estate values ​​are rising dramatically

Covington officials have sharply reduced the rate at which the city taxes real estate to its lowest point in modern history.

After freezing the rate for five consecutive years, the Board of Commissioners voted on Tuesday evening to cut it by 17%.

The new rate translates to $2.71 for every $1,000 of assessed value of real estate, down from the rate of $3.27 that has been constant since calendar year 2017. For example, the owner of a $100,000 home would pay $271 for the year in municipal property taxes, compared to $327 the previous year.

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On a historical basis, the new rate is just over a third of what it was in the mid-1970s.

“The tax rate has never been lower,” City Manager Ken Smith told the Commission.

Covington also lowered its property tax rate from 0.349 to 0.328.

Tax accounts will be sent on September 15.

Based on current information, the new real estate rate would place Covington bottom of the pack among Kenton County towns, given that half of those towns also have separate and additional ad valorem assessments for street repairs, recreation and fire/EMS.

Covington has none of these separate ratings.

The decrease was possible because the total value of real estate in the city has risen dramatically since last year, from $3.16 billion to $3.85 billion, the acting chief financial officer said. , Jerome Heist.

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“In my 22 years here in the city, I’ve never seen such a large increase,” Heist said.

The increase was related to three things: new construction in the city, dramatic increases in the housing market, and a reassessment of property values ​​by the Office of the Kenton County Property Assessment Administrator, which is required by law every four years.

These reassessments explain why not all individual homeowners — despite the Board’s decision — will see a corresponding 17% decrease in their tax bill, Mayor Joe Meyer said.

“Let me explain a reality to everyone: not everyone will benefit from a tax cut,” the mayor said. “There are those who will pay more because their assessment has gone up – but they won’t pay as much as they would have with the previous tax rate.”

Town of Covington