Property & Taxes

Ad Valorem Tax
Ad valorem tax, more commonly know as property tax, is a large source of revenue for local governments in Georgia. The basis for ad valorem taxation is the fair market value of the property which is established as of January 1 each year. The tax is levied on the assessed value of the property which, by law is established at 40% of fair market value. The amount of tax is determined by the tax rate (mill rate) levied by various entities (one mill is equal to $1.00 for each $1,000 of assessed value or 0.001).

Board of County Commissioners
The Board of County Commissioners is an elected body that establishes the budget for county operations each year, and then they levy the mill rate necessary to fund the portion of the budget to be paid for by ad valorem tax.

County Board of Education
The County Board of Education, an elected body, establishes the annual budget for school purposes and then recommend their mill rate, which, with very few exceptions, must be levied for the School Board by the County Commissioner(s).

County Board of Equalization
The County Board of Equalization, appointed by the Grand Jury, is the body charged by law with hearing and adjudicating administrative appeals to property values and assessments made by the Board of Tax Assessors. (Note: an arbitration method of appeal is available to the taxpayer in lieu of an appeal to the Board of Equalization at the option of the taxpayer at the time the appeal is filed.)

County Board of Tax Assessors
The County Board of Tax Assessors, appointed for fixed terms by the County Commissioner(s), in all counties except 1, is responsible for determining taxability and the appraisal, assessment, and the equalization of all assessments within the county. They notify taxpayers when changes are made to the value of the property, they receive and review all appeals filed, and they ensure that the appeal process proceeds properly. In addition, they approve all exemptions claimed by the taxpayer.

County Tax Commissioner
The County Tax Commissioner, an office established by the State Constitution and elected in all counties except 2, is the official responsible for receiving tax returns filed by taxpayers or designating the Board of Tax Assessors to receive them; or designating the B.O.A. to receive them In Carroll County, tax returns & H.E. are the responsibility of the B.O.A. Receiving and processing applications for homestead exemption; serving as an agent of the State Revenue Commissioner for the registration of motor vehicles; and performing all functions relating to billing, collecting, disbursing, and accounting for ad valorem taxes collected in the county.

State Revenue Commissioner
The State Revenue Commissioner exercises general oversight of the entire ad valorem tax process. In addition, the state levies ad valorem tax each year in an amount which cannot exceed 1/4 of 1 mill (0.00025).