Cass County adopts new property tax rate

Cass County Commissioner’s Court adopted a property tax rate of $0.58760 per $100 for the upcoming fiscal year at the Sept. 21 session. 
The preceding year tax rate was $0.589423 which is slightly higher than the newly adopted tax rate but is still higher than the effective tax rate $0.577680.
The effective tax rate is the tax rate that will raise the same amount of tax revenue for the county from the same properties in the 2016 and 2017 tax year. 
The reason that they were able to lower the tax rate is due the appraisal values of properties in Cass County being higher than the previous year. 
There were two public tax hearings on Sept.11 and Sept. 18 before the adoption of the new tax rate. 
No citizens of Cass County spoke at the Sept. 18 public tax hearing.
Four citizens of Cass County spoke out at the Commissioner’s Court public tax rate hearing on Sept. 11.
Frank Kessler was the first to speak at the tax hearing about the tax rate.
“I came here with the knowledge that our tax rate was going to be increased but since then I found out that the rate is going to be lowered but when you up the appraisal value the bottom line is they still go up and I just wanted to remind you around this same time I was here and spoke against the tax increase and two day later you went ahead and passed the tax increase, I just wanted to remind you that every time you increase the tax you create a burden on the people of this county with fixed incomes,” said Kessler. 
Dr. Jane Kennedy was the second to speak against higher taxes in the county. 
Dr. Kennedy read a letter written by her friend Jane Carrell that could not make it to the tax hearing due to having to work. 
“Thank you in advance for listening to my letter, I would have been glad to spoken to you in person but unfortunately neither me or my husband can make it either of you public hearings that you have scheduled because we are working,” said Dr. Kennedy.
“We as citizens have to live within our means and we all have a budget, this should go for government also, work with the money you have been given and don’t put the burden on the taxpayer.”
Dr. Kennedy spoke in her own words about having more information on what goes on within the county government.
“If people stay silent and don’t speak up you can’t fix it so I am here to say start explaining things better, putting more information out explaining what’s going on in this county,” said Dr. Kennedy. 
Nancy Clements spoke on the effect raised taxes has on landowners such as herself. 
“I am a landowner and landowners are the bottom line don’t break the backs of the landowner, each year when I open my taxes it scares me and I cannot sustain increased taxes,” said Clements. 

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