Property values up, taxes going down as Marion Selectmen approve tax rate

Dec 11, 2018

MARION — Marion property owners will see a slight tax decrease as Selectmen approved lowering the rate 42 cents compared to three years ago.

At the recommendation of the Board of Assessors, the Selectmen on Tuesday set the tax rate at $11.03 for every $1,000 of value for a property. The tax rate is only updated when property values are assessed. The state requires assessments every five years, but property values were last assessed in Marion three years ago. 

Assessors also suggested maintaining a single rate for residential and commercial properties.

In Marion, a large majority of properties are listed as residential while only a small percent are commercial. 

Moving to a split tax rate would save residential property owners a small amount, but at the expense of commercial ratepayers, said Board of Assessors Chair Bradford Eames.

“The town of Marion is so heavily residential that the impact of a split rate on the residential properties is minimum,” said Eames. “But the impact on commercial properties is enormous.”

The downside of shifting the burden to the commercial properties is that is could potentially drive away business which don’t want to pay the steeper rates. 

Eames added that because property values have experienced a 9.4% increase in three years, the tax rate has subsequently decreased.