Jacksonville City Council Approves Largest Property Tax Increase Ever

With money tight for many, the last thing you want to hear is your taxes are going up. But that's exactly what's happening in Jacksonville after the largest property tax increase ever, according to the city manager.

The city of Jacksonville found itself with a $5 million hole in its budget, so the city council approved a 10.4% property tax increase Tuesday night. It was a close vote of 4-3.

Property taxes in Jacksonville have remained steady at 53.8 cents for four years. The 10.4% hike brings the tax up to 64.2 cents per $100.

That's an average of $642 on a $100,000 property. It's $104 dollars more, but not everyone will pay that rate. Those whose home values have dropped won't pay more, because tax is based on the value of a home.

If you have a home or business in city limits, such as Jeff Bender of Jeff's Burgers, you pay both city and county taxes.

"It's double taxation," says Bender. "Basically you have a single representation when we call the law enforcement. We don't call the sheriff, we call the city police. We pay for the fire department and the city. We don't use anything that the county uses other than the schools. And you can say the hospital, but we get billed accordingly when we go to the hospitals."

"Well you do get certain benefits from the county," says Jacksonville City Manager Richard Woodruff. "Whether it is a 100% return or not it's something we certainly have not analyzed."

The tax increase takes effect July 1.