Higher taxes on the way for most property owners everywhere in Fayette County


If you own property anywhere in Fayette County — whether inside its cities and towns or in its unincorporated areas outside city limit lines — you are almost certainly facing a larger tax bill this fall.

The three largest cities in the county plan tax increases ranging from 9% to nearly 17%. The county plans a tax increase of 12%. And the largest local government spender in the county — the Fayette County Board of Education — plans a tax increase of 12%.

And all of them have been holding or are about to hold public hearings where citizens can tell their elected representatives what the taxpayers think about the higher tax bills.

Don’t expect any last-minute rollbacks, however. The local governments’ budgets have all been set with the expectation of paying for proposed expenditures with those increased revenue collections.

Here’s what’s coming:

• The Fayette County Board of Education (the school system) — New 2023 tax rate: Effective tax increase: 12.32% over the revenue that would be produced by the rollback rate. New millage rate: 19.25 mills, plus eight-tenths of a mill to pay back a school bond. School system general fund budget for Fiscal Year 2024: $268.2 million. The system explained its rate increase and the financial challenges it faces here.

Here are the school board public hearing meeting dates: Millage rate public hearing and work session, Monday, Aug. 14, 11:30 a.m; #2 on Aug. 14 at 6:00 p.m; #3 on Monday, Aug. 21 at 6:30 p.m.

Called Business Meeting (originally scheduled for Aug. 28) on Aug. 21 7:00 p.m.; CANCELED Meeting on Aug. 28 7:00 p.m.

• Fayette County (the county government) — Effective tax increase: 12.02% over the revenue that would be produced by the rollback rate. New 2023 tax rate: 4.034 mills, an increase of 0.433 mills.

Public hearing dates: Thursday, Aug. 17, 10 a.m. and same date at 6:00 p.m.

• Peachtree City — Proposed maintenance and operations rate: 6.043 mills, same millage rate, but because of the increase in property values, it represents a tax revenue increase of 12%.

Pubic hearing dates: Thursday Aug. 10, 2023, 9 a.m.; Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023, 9 a.m.; Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023, 6:30 p.m.

• Fayetteville — In percentage terms, leads all local governments with a tax revenue increase of 16.92% more than would be produced by the rollback rate. New millage rate: 5.646 mills, an increase of 0.817 mills.

Public hearings: Fayetteville City Hall on Thursday, Aug. 17 at 9:00 a.m. and again at 6:00 p.m. the same day; also Thursday, Aug. 24 at 9:00 a.m.

• Tyrone — Tax revenue increase of 9.41% compared to last year. Millage rate of 2.889, same as last year but calculated to raise more revenue because of the increase in property values.

Public hearing was Aug. 10 and will be on Tuesday, Aug. 15 at 5:00 p.m. and adoption on Thursday, Aug. 17 at 6:30 p.m.


  1. About “Higher taxes on the way for most property owners everywhere in Fayette County”

    I enjoyed reading this Citizen column; the lack of fiscal austerity is also true on the national level. There is only one thing that both parties agree on- spending money we do not have.
    I’m a social liberal but I want a balanced budget. Decades ago, I might have fit into the GOP which was trying to evaluate public expenditures based on costs versus benefits. Said another way, the old GOP cared about waste, but also about addressing the needs of our citizens. No more.
    We all know by now that Trump was no fiscal conservative. His record from 2017-2020 proves that he was a very big spender (https://www.thebalance.com/us-deficit-by-year-3306306 ). Check the deficit. It went from $665 billion in 2017, to $3.7 trillion in 2020. That’s an increase of 556% in just the four Trump years! But there’s more to the story.
    For decades, the GOP has ignored fiscal responsibility, getting much worse under Trump. It advocated tax cuts (especially for corporations and the wealthy) while constantly urging more military spending. And Trump and his friends worried little about the deficit that their polices created. The Trumpist Republican party became the “spend wildly and cut taxes” party. Often, the primary group pushing these members of Congress for increased funding was not the Pentagon. It was the military-industrial complex that Ike warned us about…big corporations wanting cost plus contracts, corporate welfare… regardless of the need for tanks, planes and so on. And the GOP fully supported them and still does. It’s a little late for the GOP to suddenly advocate for the concept of fiscal responsibility now when the Democrats are in power in the White House.
    On the other hand, the Democrats have traditionally been the big spending party. As opposed to the GOP which talks about helping the middle-income folks but does little,Democrats generally have been for the small guy, trying to get things like healthcare coverage increased. But they have not been good at raising the revenue needed to pay for these programs. Which brings me to Biden. Biden pushed through his massive COVID relief package (and the Inflation Reduction Act) with almost no GOP support.
    Reconciliation was used in the Senate to pass the Covid package with only 50 votes. It addressed many clear and vital needs (such as targeted help for businesses hurt by the pandemic), but it also had some questionable areas (like sending $2,800 checks to couples making $149,000 annually). Plus, the bill had an enormous price tag…$1.9 trillion, and over stimulated the economy. There were very few revenue raising measures (mostly relating to big corporations) included in the package.
    Biden also proposed an infrastructure bill which goes far beyond what most Americans understand as infrastructure. Not only did it address roads, bridges and so forth, but the bill also had funding for education, environmental issues, childcare and a wide range of other non-capital items that no one normally thinks of as infrastructure. And the Biden camp admitted that even with the revenue gains proposed (increasing taxes on businesses, but not back to where they were prior to the Trump cuts), it will not pay for itself for decades. Meanwhile, the GOP takes credit for the stimulation of the economy, even as they voted against the bill.
    There’s no question that infrastructure is collapsing in the US and that we are far behind other developed nations. Both parties agree on that much. When all looked lost, a courageous bi-partisan band of 21 Senators (11 from the GOP) seemingly came to the rescue with a $1.2 trillion compromise bill which Biden agreed to support. The new plan was still massive and included $579 billion on what most Americans view as traditional infrastructure (roads/bridges- $109 billion, $55 billion water, rail-$66 billion, electric/power- $73 billion, $65 billion broadband, $25 billion airports and $49 billion public transit). But, it was still weak on the payment end, failing to raise corporate taxes or taxes on the wealthy. Instead, it proposed better tax collection by the IRS, a convenient ploy to avoid making key lobbies angry. Plus, repurposing Covid money and issuing bonds.
    Hopefully, there will eventually be revenue increases to off-set costs. But neither party seems to want to pay the piper. So, our national deficit increases..

  2. every property increased price in the last 5 years from 50 to 80%, so because of that county/city are collecting 50 to 80% more money, and that is not enough then they are going for more !!!! STOP TAKING MONEY FROM PEOPLE !!!! people needs more money in their pocket to alive last 2 years inflation and start paying their debts, this tax increase only lead to more inflation, higher rents and more

    • Our taxes pay for all county services.. police, fire, EMT and 911. Schools and all associated services such as meals (even during summer vacations) and after school programs. Libraries, parks and recreational facilities, public welfare, health and hospitals. Road construction and maintenance, cart paths and traffic lights. Government operations, buildings and employees, courts and jails, health departments and animal shelters. All these services, and the people who support them, cost money. The services we enjoy and rely upon are not free and their costs are subject to the same inflation we as individual taxpayers experience. None of us live in a vacuum.