The Georgia Senate voted on and passed Senate Bill 317 on January 18, 2018. The bill, sponsored in part by Senator John Albers of Georgia’s 56th District (encompassing parts of northern Fulton and Cherokee Counties), would provide a new partial property tax exemption for Fulton County property owners. The Bill would allow all Fulton residents to exempt the increase of their Fulton County school property taxes that exceeds the Consumer Price Index (CPI) or 3%, whichever is less, annually over the 2016 amount. The bill essentially caps the amount of annual increase to school taxes for Fulton residents. You can read the entire bill HERE.
School taxes tend to be a large chunk of the average property tax bills – 60% of the bill in some cases goes to the school district. This proposed school tax exemption is different than the popular school tax exemption in Cobb County: the Cobb exemption is a 100% exemption of the county school tax for residents over age 62. The proposed Fulton exemption would be available to all residential property owners (regardless of age) but would only cap the amount at which the school tax increases over the property’s current taxes by the lesser of CPI or 3%. So, Fulton property owners will continue to pay school taxes but would be protected from significant increases that occur due to increases in their property’s value or the County millage rate.
SB 317 goes next to the House and then, if passed, will require voter approval in November 2018.