The Greensboro City Council may have a hidden agenda in the 30 percent property tax increase in City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba’s proposed budget.
Greensboro has long had the highest property tax rate of any comparable municipality in North Carolina.
If the property tax rate is lowered to the revenue neutral rate of 54.56, that would put Greensboro at number three as far as property tax rates for the larger municipalities in the state.
Maintaining the property tax rate at 66.25 cents would allow Greensboro to remain number 1 in property tax rates among the state’s 10 largest cities.
Cities have not passed their 2022-2023 budgets so the comparison is for the current tax rates, but unlike Greensboro, it doesn’t appear any comparable city in the state is considering raising their property taxes by 30 percent.
North Carolina’s largest city, Charlotte, by comparison, currently has a property tax of 34.81 cents.
The state’s second largest city, Raleigh, has a property tax rate of 35.52 cents.
Durham – which is the state’s fourth largest city and if current trends continue will pass Greensboro in population and be North Carolina’s third largest city well before the 2030 Census – has a property tax rate of 53.17 cents.
Winston-Salem, the fifth largest city, has a property tax rate of 63.74.
Fayetteville, the state’s sixth largest city, has a property tax rate of 49.95.
Cary, which is currently the state’s seventh largest city and growing rapidly, has a property tax rate of 35.00.
Wilmington the eighth largest city in the state has a property tax rate of 49.84.
High Point, Greensboro’s neighbor in Guilford County, is the ninth largest city in the state and has a tax rate of 64.75 cents.
And Concord, the 10th largest city in the state, has a property tax rate of 48.00 cents.
If the Greensboro City Council were to lower the property tax rate to the revenue neutral rate of 54.56, the rate would still be higher than Charlotte, Raleigh and Durham but would be lower than Greensboro’s closest neighbors – Winston-Salem and High Point.
On the downside, Greensboro would have to give up its number one ranking.