Officials in the three Weber County cities and the fire district are proposing tax increases due variously to expected decreases in other revenue sources, increasing service demands and rises in the cost of doing business. Property owners in North Ogden and Pleasant View potentially face more than one increase — in taxes both for municipal services and fire protection since they’re both within the boundaries of the North View Fire District, or NVFD.
By dollar amount, the South Ogden increase would be the largest, boosting property tax revenue by around $222,000, from $3.06 million last year to $3.28 million this year. The North Ogden increase would generate around $216,000, boosting property tax revenue from $1.22 million to $1.43 million. The NVFD hike would generate around $183,000, increasing property tax revenue from $2.3 million to $2.48 million. The Pleasant View hike would generate $57,000 more, boosting property tax inflows for the city from around $757,000 to $814,000.
All estimated property tax totals for 2020, derived from figures prepared by the Weber County Clerk-Auditor’s Office, exclude revenue applicable to new growth. The proposed increases, meanwhile, are the focus of truth-in-taxation hearings in August, per state law requiring such meetings to give the public the opportunity to sound off ahead of time. If ultimately approved, the increases would show on property tax bills to be sent out this fall.
Here’s the potential hit to owners in the varied locales:
In South Ogden, the owner of a $300,000 home would see city taxes go from $415.31 to $445.50 per the change, an increase of $30.19. South Ogden has its own fire department and the tax figures include the cost of fire protection.
Those living in $300,000 homes in the NVFD would see their taxes for fire protection go from $158.57 to $171.11, a $12.54 increase. The average home value in the boundaries of the NVFD, which serves North Ogden, Pleasant View and Harrisville, is $339,000.
In North Ogden, the owner of a $300,000 home would see city taxes go from $165.33 to $194.70, an increase of $29.37. Adding the NVFD taxes to that, the total owed to the two taxing entities would go from $323.90 to $365.81, a $41.91 increase.
In Pleasant View, the owner of a $300,000 home would see taxes go from $165.17 to $177.54, a $12.37 rise. Adding the NVFD taxes to that, the total owed to the two taxing entities would go from $323.74 to $348.65, a $24.91 increase.
The average home value is $329,000 in North Ogden and $414,000 in Pleasant View. Thus property tax bills for average homeowners in the two cities would be correspondingly higher than bills for a $300,000 homeowner. The average home value in South Ogden is $290,000, so the average homeowner in the city would see a slightly lower bill than the owner of a $300,000 house.
South Ogden City Manager Matt Dixon said no single factor bears in the proposed property tax increase there. He cited the increased cost of doing business due to inflation and expected reductions in some fee revenue due to the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, among other things. City officials regularly review the property tax rate when crafting each year’s budget, mindful that small, regular increases are generally more palatable to the public than larger, more infrequent increases, Dixon said.
South Ogden leaders proposed a property tax hike in 2019, but ultimately voted it down.
North Ogden Mayor S. Neal Berube said a budget shortfall in planning the 2020-2021 spending plan figure in the tax hike proposal there. Gasoline tax revenue is expected to decline, he said, and the city has halted collection of a transportation utility fee due to a court ruling earlier this year deeming such fees taxes.
Pleasant View Mayor Leonard Call cited an expected reduction in sales tax revenue, among other things, for the proposed increase there.
NVFD Chief David Wade noted the hiring of three additional staffers in the fire district and ongoing growth, increasing demands for services. “We’re trying to get ahead of the curve with our services and not stay behind,” he said. NVFD officials also approved a property tax hike in 2019, which increased estimated property tax revenue from $2.09 million to $2.3 million.
South Ogden’s truth-in-taxation hearing on the proposed tax hike there is scheduled for Aug. 4 at 6:05 p.m. at city offices at 3950 S. Adams Ave. North Ogden’s hearing is scheduled for Aug. 4 at 6 p.m. and will be held at the North View Senior Center, 485 E. 2550 North.
Pleasant View’s hearing is scheduled for Aug. 11 at 6 p.m. at city offices at 520 W. Elberta Drive. The NVFD hearing is scheduled for Aug. 18 at 6 p.m. at the North View Fire Station, 315 E. 2550 North.