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Careful budgeting allows Dawson County Board of Education to approve new millage rate of 15
Board of Education Sign.JPG
The Board of Education building at 28 Main Street. - photo by Jessica Taylor

The Dawson County Board of Education has officially approved a new school millage rate of 15, rolling back the rate from last year’s millage 15.778. 

According to Dawson County Schools Chief Financial Officer Jamie Ulrich, each year the millage rate is calculated by looking at tax digest information and calculating what the new millage rate should be. Based on this information, Ulrich’s calculation for the new rate was 15.223. 

She said that the members of the Board of Education decided to reduce the rate down even further to an even 15 mills, thanks to careful budgeting and the extra income the system received from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act in the past year. 

“The district looks like we’re in a good place with the CARES money coming in,” Ulrich said, “we were able to move some expenditures out to that CARES funding to be able to increase our ending fund balance for the fiscal year of ‘21, so the board just wanted to make it an even 15 mills.” 

The millage rate is the formula that calculates property taxes. One mill equals $1 for every $1,000 in assessed property value, which is 40 percent of the actual market value. 

Each year, the Board of Education, along with the Dawson County Board of Commissioners and the Dawsonville City Council, calculates and approves its millage rate, and the combination of the three rates is the total property tax for county residents. 

As property taxes are collected, the tax commissioner will keep a commission of 2.5 percent of the total. This will leave the school district with a total net collection of about $22,912,314 from property tax collections, which will go into the system’s general fund balance.

The members of the Dawson County Board of Education voted at the Aug. 10 board meeting to approve the millage rate of 15. 

On Aug. 5, the Dawson County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a county millage rate of 7.625, a rate that is rolled back from last year’s county rate of 7.885. The Dawsonville City Council voted unanimously at its Aug. 2 meeting to roll back the city’s millage rate to zero, as it has for over 25 years.