WAKE COUNTY, N.C. — Wake County commissioners voted Monday to raise the property tax rate by 4 cents to give schools and other groups the budget hikes they want.
Commissioners voted 5-2 to raise the tax rate to 60.4 cents per $100 assessed value.
"There is $2 million in long-overdue teacher salary increase, a modest increase, to help keep highly qualified teachers in the classroom," said Bill McNeal, superintendent of Wake County schools.
Members of the Wake County Sheriff's Office also attended the meeting. They were seeking money to hire 68 new deputies for the Hammond Road annex, a facility that currently sits with 200 empty beds.
"The Hammond Road [Annex], in a little over three years now, has never been funded with the proper personnel to run it," Sheriff Donnie Harrison said.
Homeowner William Reynolds said he did not want the county to raise his property taxes.
"I ask you, respectfully, to hold the line, to economize and to prioritize," he said.
Wake County's size and average home price help keep the property tax rate down. Before Monday's commissioners meeting, the property tax rate in Wake was 56 cents per $100.
In 1999, Wake County's rate was 73 cents. It was lowered when properties were re-valuated.
The tax increase will generate $26.3 million. County Manager David Cook said that is enough money to avoid cutting $10 million dollars from the school district.
Here is a rundown of 2001-02 property tax rates for some areas surrounding Wake County, according to the N.C. Association of County Commissioners: