Two-Tier Tax Plan Moving Forward in Crisfield - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Two-Tier Tax Plan Moving Forward in Crisfield

CRISFIELD, Md. – Property taxes could be going up under a two-tier tax plan that is moving forward in Crisfield.

The Crisfield City Council recently reviewed and approved the first reading of an ordinance that would raise property taxes from 70 cents to 81 cents per $100 of assessed value. The ordinance still has to clear a few hurdles before taking effect at the beginning of the next fiscal year.

The plan comes amid a decline in property value assessments. The decrease in those assessments is affecting the budget. A property tax hike is expected to balance the budget.  

The increase would apply to people living or occupying business space in Crisfield.
People who own rental or vacant properties could end up paying double the increase, if certain standards are not met.

City officials declined to comment on the ordinance. In a statement, Mayor Percy Purnell said plans for the property tax hike are still “ premature at this time.”

Mitchell Annhill lives in Crisfield. She is against a property tax increase. She said a lot of people are struggling financially.

  "I don't think it's a very good idea right now because the people in this town just don't have the money for it," Annhill said.

Michael Wigglesworth agrees with Annhill.  Though his household has two incomes, he said an increase will be hard on some people who do not.

 "Our incomes are low, and when you start raising people's taxes on a fixed income, they just have to find something else they will have to cut back on," Wigglesworth said.
Not everyone is opposed to the tax hike, Karen Hosea supports the city’s plan , if it will move Crisfield forward.

  "I think it's reasonable,” Hosea said. “ I guess a lot of times you're not going to get something for nothing.”

“If we want to increase Crisfield, [better our] livelihoods…you've got to pay the taxes," she said.

A second reading on the ordinance is pending in Somerset County.
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