Waynesboro tax rate remains undecided after Council shoots down lower rate

Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 10:48 PM EDT
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WAYNESBORO, Va. (WVIR) - In a 3-2 vote Monday night, Waynesboro City Council shot down a lower tax rate. Instead of $0.83, Council is considering keeping the rate at $0.90.

After the vote, people spoke out during matters from the public. The majority support Council’s move to hold the line at $0.90.

$0.90 is actually a $0.07 tax increase due to reassessments showing higher property values.

If adopted, it would ensure the city’s ability to fund the schools, give employees a 3% raise, and provide some money for the West End Fire Station.

Most people said the $0.90 tax rate is needed to sufficiently fund the city and keep it moving forward.

“The things that make a city attractive are not just low taxes,” said Waynesboro homeowner Sharon Van Name. “The things that are important to me are having an infrastructure that’s well maintained with good city services.”

“I love this city, and some of the great things that are happening right now, the momentum that we’re starting to build, the things that we’re doing,” said home and property owner Jeff Fife. “We can’t crush now with penny-pinching obstructionism. It’s time to move Waynesboro forward.”

In total, seven people spoke in favor of the higher tax rate, but Danny Ledford and one other gentleman spoke against it. “I’m here because I wanted the $0.83 because what I’ve seen with this council over the years is you guys don’t utilize our tax money in the appropriate manner,” said Ledford.

Council also voted to table its vote on the budget to align with the real estate taxes. They’ll vote on the tax rate and budget at the next meeting in two weeks.

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