Washington County Commission vote on tax reduction has commissioners on edge

Maryland

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — Some Washington County commissioners got a bit heated this week over a proposed tax rollback.

The newest commissioner, Charles Burkett — who took the seat of recently-resigned commissioner Cort Meinelschmidt — led a motion to lower the tax rate from 3.2 percent to 2.8 percent. That would mean a savings of more than $200 a year for a Washington County household making just over $50,000 a year.

Concerns were raised about having to deny that lost revenue to public safety for the county, but Burkett feels new revenue is forthcoming from projected business growth.

“I think with the growth that we’re seeing with Amazon coming in and with growth — shovel-ready growth — we will cover this reduction in taxes,” said Burkett.

There will be an informal meeting on Friday with commissioners and the county’s chief financial officer, Sara Greaves, to identify options to best balance the budget.

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