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It’s now clear that the FY2020 budget the Gwinnett County Board of Education adopted will not need to increase the millage rate, but rather decrease it slightly.

“In light of projected growth in the property tax digest,” a county release said. “the Gwinnett BOE actually will propose a slight decrease in the millage rate, resulting in a maintenance and operations and debt-service millage rate of 19.70 and 1.90, respectively. This is down from last year’s rates of 19.80 and 1.95, respectively.”

The maintenance and operations millage rate helps pay for employee salaries and other day-to-day expenses, while the debt-service millage rate goes toward the school board’s long term projects and debts.

Three public hearings are scheduled where citizens can provide their input. The first will be held at 6 p.m. July 2 in the Board Room at the J. Alvin Wilbanks Instructional Support Center (ISC), located at 437 Old Peachtree Road NW in Suwanee. The second will be at 11:45 a.m. on July 9, and the third at 6 p.m. on July 9, both occurring in the Board Room at the ISC.

Thought the millage rate is decreasing, state law dictates that if the rate is not reduced enough to bring it down to a revenue neutral level, it must be advertised as a property tax increase. Taxpayers whose property has not been assigned a higher value through reassessments this year will not see an increase in their school taxes.

Details about the budget and the property tax increase advertisement can be found at GCPS’ website.

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Taylor Denman is a reporter born and raised in Gwinnett County. He came back home to seize the rare opportunity of telling stories about the county in which he grew up.

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