Property tax rates plummet, due to higher assessments

COLUMBUS, Ind. — While Bartholomew County property tax rates from 2021 (payable 2022) are significantly lower than a year earlier, that likely won’t mean more money in more pockets.

The countywide 0.4252 cent tax rate is down substantially from the 0.4509 rate used to help calculate property tax bills last year. In fact, a comparison shows the county’s tax rate has only been lower one year 2016 (payable 2017) over the past 11 years.

“This is a pretty dramatic decrease,” Bartholomew County Auditor Pia O’Connor said.

But for many property owners, lower property tax rates won’t mean lower tax installments in May and November, county assessor Ginny Whipple said.

The most significant influence on this year’s tax rates was the 19% increase in the average sale price of a Bartholomew County home in just one year, from 2020 to 2021, Whipple said.

“These tax rates reflect the fact that most property assessed value increased from 2020 to 2021,” Whipple said. “That doesn’t necessarily mean lower taxes. It means their bill won’t be as high as it would have been had their tax rate stayed the same.”

While there is a county tax rate, there are also different rates for 27 townships, communities and annexed areas throughout the county. Only Clifty Township, Hawcreek Township, Ohio Township and an annexed section of Edinburgh experienced an increase in their tax rate, according to figures distributed by the county auditor’s office.

“Figuring out a tax rate is simple math,” O’Connor said. “It’s the total revenue amount divided by the assessed value.”

For the complete story, see Saturday’s Republic.