BELGRADE — Taxpayers will get a break this year thanks to a townwide revaluation assessors wrapped up this past spring.

Board of Selectpersons member Ernie Rice said the tax rate will decrease from $14.20 per $1,000 of property valuation to $11.95.

Homeowners with property valued at $300,000, which is the average cost of a home in Belgrade, will pay $675 less in their annual tax bills, town officials said.

Without a finalized school budget, board members had to rely on the school board’s last approved budget, as required by law, to secure a commitment so tax bills could be sent out.

The budget for Regional School Unit 18, which serves Belgrade, Oakland, Sidney, China and Rome, was defeated 1,209-1,171 on June 12.

“The school budget didn’t get approved and we had to set our rate,” Rice said Monday. “If the school budget is lower, we can carry over the extra funds to help us next year; but at this point I don’t know how that will come out.”

If the $33 million school budget had passed, annual property taxes on a $300,000 home would have risen in Belgrade by $153.

Rice said officials have no control over the school budget but were able to hold the line on municipal spending.

The municipal budget came in at $2,471,909 for 2012-13.

Belgrade’s share of the county budget is $621,395, and the town’s share of the school budget is estimated at $4,922,304.

“The big argument voters had was the carry-over of $1 million from last year plus this increase of another $1 million,” he said of the proposed school budget that was defeated. “If you want to do the math, it really was a $2 million increase. How can you justify that?”

In other business, board members last week also discussed a nonresidential meeting to be scheduled for sometime in August. Board members want feedback from nonresidents, who contribute 50 percent of the town’s tax base.

Board members also discussed the town’s general assistance program, which is about $5,000 over budget.

“This year there’s been a lot of requests for general assistance,” he said. “We have guidelines to follow that the state has in place. We have to make sure that we comply with the law, but not give anything away unnecessary.”

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