Naples, Casco tax rates set

By Dawn De Busk

Staff Writer

NAPLES — Two neighboring towns announced their 2018–19 tax rates within a couple days of one another.

In Naples, the town’s mil rate stayed the same: $13.35 per $1,000 of valuation.

In the Town of Casco, the new tax rate is $15.40, which is a 30-cent increase.

“We anticipated the bond would require an increase of 60 cents so it is not as drastic as we originally anticipated,” Casco Town Manager Dave Morton said.

Residents at the annual town meeting in 2016 approved a $2.5 million infrastructure bond for road improvements and for the replacement of the Pleasant Lake-Parker Pond Dam. Additionally, residents approved the purchase of land next to the Town Hall and the construction of the town office. So, the town floated a bond of approximately $3.4 million.

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, the Casco Board of Selectmen opted to offset taxes by using the premium from the bond, Morton said.

“That was a one-time thing, and we couldn’t do it again this year,” he said.

He anticipated the tax bills would be mailed out to property owners in the next couple of weeks.

Morton mentioned the tax rate during the town manager’s comments at the Casco Board of Selectmen meeting on Tuesday.

On Monday, Naples Town Manager John Hawley announced a status quo mil rate for the town. Like Morton, Hawley brought up the tax rate amount during the town manager’s comments at the Naples Board of Selectmen meeting.

“We were fortunate to be very conservative with our planning process. The [selectmen] established the goal to keep the mil rate the same,” Hawley said during an interview on Tuesday.

“After the school budget was announced, we molded the municipal departments’ budgets around that so that we wouldn’t see any increases,” he said.

Hawley participated in the budget process. However, he did not officially step into the full-time town manager position until April of this year.

The history of the Naples mil rate is: During the 2016–17 tax year, a reduction in the mil rate brought it to $13.20. Then, for the 2017–18 fiscal year, the tax rate was bumped up by 15 cents to $13.35.

Typically, towns set the mil rate in August so that tax bills can be generated and mailed out in September.

“People should start seeing them in their mailboxes in the middle of September,” Hawley said.

The tax bills are due in two payments: Oct. 20 and April 20.

There is a fee of 7% interest for late payments, Hawley said.

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