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The process of taxing and collecting taxes is not a simple one. This guide contains information to provide the taxpayer with a complete understanding of the taxation process.
What is a property tax and how is it figured?
A property tax is an ad valorem tax - one that is based on the value of the property being taxed. The County Assessor is charged with the responsibility of determining the market value of your property. Once established, an assessment ratio determined by the legislature is applied to market value. The assessment ratios are currently 11.5% for industrial property and 9.5% for commercial and residential property. After multiplying the market value by the assessment ratio, the resulting number is called the "assessed valuation". The mill levy is applied to the assessed valuation to determine general taxes.
For example, assume you have a home worth $100,000 that is located in the city limits of Cheyenne. Figure your tax bill as follows:
First, determine assessed valuation => $100,000 (market value) x 9.5% (assessment ratio) = $9,500 (assessed valuation). Then, apply the mill levy to determine tax => $9,500 x .07600 (2002 mill levy) = $722.00.
What is a mill levy?
A mill is one one-thousandth of a dollar. Therefore, there is $1 of tax per thousand dollars of assessed value for each mill levied. The "mill levy" is the total number of mills applied to your assessed value. Various entities are legally entitled to charge mills against properties in their districts, subject to limits. The entities determine their budget needs, then levy the mills necessary to provide the needed funds.
As an example, here is the mill levy breakdown for a property located within the city limits of Cheyenne, along with the taxes for the example $100,000 home:
|School District #1||26.00||247.00|
|State School Foundation||12.00||114.00|
|County School Fund||6.00||57.00|
|City of Cheyenne||8.00||76.00|
|Weed and Pest Control District||1.50||14.25|
Entities that levy mills in Laramie County, with the 2002 levy amount:
|State Treasurer - School Foundation Fund||12 mills|
|Laramie County School District #1||26 mills|
|Laramie County School District #2||25 mills|
|Laramie County||9.5 mills|
|Laramie County Fair||.5 mill|
|Laramie County Library||2 mills|
|Laramie County Community College||10 mills|
|City of Cheyenne||8 mills|
|Town of Albin||5 mills|
|Town of Burns||5 mills|
|Town of Pine Bluffs||5 mills|
|Downtown Development Association (DDA)||10 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #1||3 mills|
|South Cheyenne Water and Sewer District (SCWSD)||4.02 mills|
|Willow Pond Improvement District (WPID)||10.01 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #2||3 mills|
|Green Meadow Improvement District||32 mills|
|Vandehei North Forty Improvement District||9 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #3||3 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #4||3 mills|
|Carpenter Water and Sewer District||8 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #5||3 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #6||3 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #8||3 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #9||3 mills|
|Laramie County Fire District #10||3 mills|
|Laramie County Weed and Pest Control||1.5 mills|
|Laramie County Conservation District||.5 mill|
|Eastern Laramie County Solid Waste District||3 mills|