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School system anticipates $622M in property taxes

SUWANEE - About $622 million of Gwinnett County Public Schools' upcoming $1.9 billion budget will come from property taxes, Chief Financial Officer Rick Cost said Monday evening.

Property taxes are used to support two funds within the school district's budget for the upcoming fiscal year: the general fund and the debt service fund. For the fourth consecutive year, Cost said, the school system is recommending a total school millage rate of 20.55 mills - 19.25 for maintenance and operations and 1.3 for debt service.

Under the proposed millage rate, about $582 million in property taxes will go toward the $1.3 billion general fund, which pays for the day-to-day operations of the school district, Cost said. About 76 percent of this fund is used for instructional services.

Nearly $40 million in property taxes would go toward the $66.6 million debt service fund, which consists of outstanding debt associated with bond programs, Cost said.

A homeowner whose property is valued at $150,000 would pay about $1,156 in school taxes, while a homeowner whose property is valued at $250,000 would pay about $1,978, Cost said. School taxes on a property valued at $200,000 would be about $1,567.

Homeowners' school property taxes would not increase unless their property is reassessed at a higher value, Cost said.

Cost presented this information Monday during the first of three public hearings on the proposed millage rate.

The Gwinnett County Board of Education will hold additional public hearings at 11:45 a.m. and 7 p.m. June 9 before adopting the millage rate that evening.

Residents may address the school board during these meetings, which are held in the Instructional Support Center at 437 Old Peachtree Road in Suwanee. Those who wish to speak are not required to sign up in advance.

For more information about the school district's budget, which the school board adopted in May, visit www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us.