Second-row property owners to see some tax relief

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By Staff Brunswick Beacon

HOLDEN BEACH—Some second-row property owners may get some relief beginning in 2009 on their property tax bills.

Brunswick County Tax Administrator Tom Bagby announced a $30 million tax adjustment for Holden Beach, mainly for second-row properties.

“Most of us were upset with the tax values,” Mayor Alan Holden said, referring to the 2007 countywide tax revaluation, which valued Holden Beach at $1.85 billion.

“Many of you asked for relief and for something to be done,” Holden said.

“Some of the worst examples were some of the second-row property owners—specifically two second-row vacant lots assessed at $700,000 each,” Holden said.

The re-adjusted tax value for Holden Beach is $1.82 billion, which represents an approximate revenue decrease of $20,000.

“Several of you went to Bolivia and lost and went to Raleigh and won,” Holden said.

“Evidently, somebody’s been doing a lot of work in the background to get the job done,” town manager David Hewett added.

The property owners whose property values have been re-adjusted have not yet been notified, Hewett said.

“It’s my understanding, although you, the property owners, will get a specific notification, the adjustment is not for this tax year,” Hewett said.

Values for about 360 of the 500 second-row properties have been re-adjusted.

“The list of happy people have not been released back to the happy people yet,” Holden said.

The new tax values go into affect Jan. 1, 2009.

But not all second-row property owners can expect to receive a rebate.

“The only people that will get a rebate are the people who took their appeals all the way to the state department of taxation,” Hewett said.

Holden said town officials are still pursuing tax relief for additional property owners.

“This is not the end of the battle. There are other activities going on,” Holden said.

“There are a lot of inequities on the island. We’re doing the best we can to try and get more relief island-wide,” Holden said.

“We are doing all that we can for all locations on the island.”

In other business, board members:

•Adopted a town donation policy to outline agency requests for funding or donations.

•Approved a resolution in support of June as Elder Abuse Awareness Month.

•Approved an ordinance amending the revenues and appropriations for fiscal year 2007-2008 to allow for a $7,500 contribution to Concerts by the Sea.

•Approved moving forward with a meeting with commissioners, town staff and property owners from the three canal subdivisions to discuss unifying future canal dredging projects. Holden proposed the town create “A town dredging district and impose a canal dredging fee for navigation projects, including the dredging of canals.”

“Paperwork needs to be standard. Procedures need to be standard.” Holden said.

“We’re not going to interrupt anything. We’re just going to try and do better.”