Chatham County

Budget's higher, but tax bill isn't. How Pittsboro is doing it

The Historic Courthouse in Pittsboro is the centerpiece of downtown.
The Historic Courthouse in Pittsboro is the centerpiece of downtown.

Property owners in Pittsboro won't see their tax bill increase next year, but new development in town will cost more under the proposed budget.

Town Manager Bryan Gruesbeck's recommended spending plan is $4.9 million, a 7.3 percent increase over the current budget.

The town is collecting more in ABC taxes, planning fees and property taxes to offset the budget growth, Gruesbeck said.

The property tax rate will remain at 43.3 cents per $100 of assessed value. That means the town tax bill for a $200,000 home in town will be about $866. About half of the town's budget is covered by property taxes. The town expects to collect about $2.3 million next year in property taxes.

The proposed Chatham County budget also holds the line on taxes at 62.81 cents per $100 of assessed property value. That means the owner of a $200,000 house would pay another $1,256.20 for a total property tax bill of about $2,122.20.

Developers will pay more for commercial-use site plans submitted for review. The fee goes to $600 under the new plan, up $160 from the current $440 for projects of one acre or less. Larger projects will cost $600 plus $25 per acre..

The town also is changing its "Development Review" fee and renaming it "Engineering Plan Review." This now costs $50 per sheet with no minimum. The proposal establishes a $600 minimum while also keeping the $50 per sheet fee for larger submittals.

Major Subdivision review fees are currently collected on a sliding scale with five steps starting at $1,800 for six to 10 lots and going up to $100 per lot for subdivisions with more than 40 lots. The new fee is $700 plus $100 per lot regardless of the number of lots in the subdivision.

The town also will begin collecting a new fee when amendments are made to commercial and subdivision site plans. The town does not charge a fee now but will begin collecting at the rate of half of the original fee for each amendment that is submitted.

The proposed budget calls for a 2.5 percent salary increase for town employees

What's next

The town will hold a public hearing on the proposed budget at its next meeting on June 11 with final approval set for June 25. The state requires towns to have their budgets adopted by June 30.