Wrangell’s Front Street, 2020.
(Sage Smiley / KSTK)

Wrangell’s administration is proposing a 23.5% decrease to the property tax rate for most properties in the borough

That follows a nearly 50% bump in property values this year, after the local government paid to have nearly every property in town reassessed.

Property taxes are determined by multiplying the assessed value of a property by a figure called the mill rate. For more than a decade, Wrangell’s mill rate has been 12.75 mills, or $12.75 of property tax for every $1,000 of assessed value. That’s for properties within the borough’s “service area,” which is most of the borough. Communities that are off-grid like Meyers Chuck, Olive Cove or Thom’s Place pay a rate of 4 mills, or $4 per $1,000 of assessed value. 

The borough’s draft budget shows a decrease in the mill rate to 9.75 mills. That would mean that a property with an assessed value of $300,000 would pay $3,825 in property taxes inside the service area. 

The borough isn’t proposing a change in the mill rate for properties outside of the service area – that rate would stay at 4 mills. 

There’s more than $378.8 million-worth of property in the borough. Just under 60% of that property is taxable – $224.7 million. The rest is owned by the local, state or federal governments, Alaska Native organizations, churches, or by seniors or disabled veterans with tax exemptions. 

If the borough assembly accepts the proposed mill rate for the coming year, it’s estimated to bring in just over $2 million in property taxes, a $300,000 increase from last year. That would make up about 30% of the borough’s expected revenues. 

Wrangell’s Assembly will hold a work session on the proposed borough budget at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6 in the City Hall Assembly Chambers. 

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