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November 21. 2012 9:44AM

Farmington tax rate up 4.7 percent

FARMINGTON - While the community paid off a bond for its elementary school, residents should see an increase on their tax bills as state revenue decreases this year.

On Nov. 5, the N.H. Department of Revenue Administration set the overall tax rate at $21 per $1,000 of local valuation. It is $1 - or 4.76 percent - greater than last year's rate of $20.

The total tax rate is broken down as follows: $6.65 for the town, $9.87 for local schools, $2.18 for state schools and $2.30 for the county.

Last year, it was $7.13 for the town, $8.12 for local schools, $2.35 for state schools and $2.40 for the county.

While the town portion decreased 48 cents, the local school portion rose $1.75 due to a combination of less revenue and a smaller fund balance than the previous year, according to business administrator Jeanette Lemay.

Lemay said the district returned $151,000 to help offset taxes, as compared to $710,000 in 2011. She added a new law will allow school districts to ask residents - via warrant articles - to retain 2 percent of their fund balance for emergencies.

"There was a drop in revenue of about $1 million," Lemay said, adding the district no longer receives state building aid since taxpayers paid off the bond for Valley View Community School, which educates students in kindergarten through grade 3.

Lemay said the district plans to shift personnel to create new programs - like chemistry - as part of the ongoing budget process.

The overall valuation of the town increased by $5,556,203 - or 1.2 percent - from $467,620,120 to $473,176,323.


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