The property tax rate for city taxpayers will fall for the third consecutive year, though many homeowners will pay more in taxes overall due to rising home values.

The rate cut approved Tuesday by Maricopa City Council lowers the primary property tax rate from 4.37% per $100 of assessed value to 4.17%. The secondary rate was reduced from 0.88% to 0.84%.

Lower primary and secondary property tax rates will mitigate the increase in overall tax bills brought on by skyrocketing home values. With the lower tax rate, the City’s property tax revenue will rise $630,756, from about $14.8 million to $15.4 million – an increase of about 4.27%.

The city budget for the new fiscal year projects a surplus of $16.8 million.

City Manager Rick Horst said the addition of more than 1,800 homes and “hundreds of thousands of square feet of retail, office and business which constitutes the bulk of the increase” in revenue.

Interim Mayor Vincent Manfredi moved the item from council’s consent agenda to the regular agenda to clarify residents’ concerns about the language of the ordinance.

As worded, the ordinance called for “levying separate amounts to be raised for primary and secondary property tax levies upon each one hundred dollars ($100.00) of the assessed valuation of property subject to taxation within the City of Maricopa for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2023.”

The phrase “amounts to be raised” caused concern with some citizens who thought it described a tax increase. But Manfredi said the wording simply meant to levy the tax to collect funds, not increase the amount of the tax.

“This ordinance is just the final documentation for the property tax that was approved as part of the budget process,” said Matt Kozlowski, the city’s chief financial officer.

The city’s FY 2023 budget, which included the tax reduction, was passed by the council in May.

Editor’s note: Vincent Manfredi is an owner of InMaricopa.