Personal property tax relief rate set to fall in Southampton County

Published 12:00 pm Monday, September 26, 2022

The Southampton County Board of Supervisors will be holding a public hearing Tuesday, Sept. 27, as it considers an ordinance that would reduce the personal property tax relief rate in light of increasing market values.

Amy B. Carr

A public notice stated that the board will be considering “an ordinance setting the personal property tax relief rate at 27% for the first $20,000 of personal use vehicle value; 100% for personal use vehicles valued at less than $1,000.”

Southampton County Commissioner of the Revenue Amy B. Carr explained that this is a rate that is set each year.

“This is the amount of relief that the state will pay on each person’s qualifying vehicle, so it amounts to an increase in the taxes that the taxpayer will have to pay this year because the rate that the state is paying has decreased,” she said.

She noted that instead of 27%, last year the rate was 38.64%.

“The state gives each locality a set amount of revenue to cover this, so it never changes,” she said. “It’s been the same since 2006.”

However, what the county’s rate will be is affected by fluctuations in values, she stated.

“We have to set the rate at a rate that will cover just what the state gives us so we do not end up in the hole,” she said. “Market values have gone up so much on the vehicles that the taxpayer is paying more, and the state is not giving us enough money to cover that.”

She noted that the Board of Supervisors sets the percentage to “just make sure that we do not lose money simply because of the state only giving us a set amount. So they do have the power to control it, but if they increase it, then we’re going to lose money, because it’ll reduce the amount of money that the taxpayer is paying, but the state is not going to give us enough to cover that.”

According to the public notice, the public hearing will be held at 6 p.m., or as soon thereafter as may be heard, in the Board Room of the Southampton County Office Center at 26022 Administration Center Drive in Courtland.