Property taxes going down for many in Lea County
LOVINGTON — With a 35 percent increase in Lea County’s assessed valuation for the 2018 tax year over 2017, most Hobbs residents will pay less in property taxes.
The Lea County Commission certified tax rates set by the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department in a special meeting Friday, issuing a required order to the county assessor to collect property taxes at those rates.
According to the state agency, the taxable value of property in Lea County grew in the last year from $3,595,509,017 to $4,865,047,771, a 35 percent increase of almost $1.37 billion.
Throughout the county, most property tax rates decreased as much as 5.4 percent and the few increases were at 1 percent or less. Decreases occurred in Tatum, Hobbs and Eunice. Increases are for residential property inside and outside Lovington and Jal.
In Hobbs, residential taxpayers paid $27.62 for every $1,000 in taxable valuation last year. This year, the rate is $26.121. For instance, at an assessed value of $50,000, the taxpayer paid $1,381 in 2017. This year’s payment would be about $1,306, or about $75 less.
Normally, the assessed value is about one-third of the appraised value of taxable property.
Residential taxpayers outside Hobbs will pay even less, at a decrease in tax rate of 6.7 percent. At $22.137 per $1,000, with an assessed value of $50,000, the taxpayer will pay about $79 less.
Other decreases in residential property tax rates in Lea County were smaller: 0.2 percent inside Eunice, 0.4 percent outside Eunice, 0.7 percent inside Tatum and 1.0 percent outside Tatum. Increases were 0.8 percent for residential properties inside and outside of Loving-ton and 1 percent for residential properties inside and outside of Jal.
For instance, a residential taxpayer in Jal with a $50,000 assessed value property paid about $1,331 in 2017 taxes and will pay about $1,345 this year, or about $14 more.
After the commissioners unanimously approved a resolution certifying the tax rates, Commission Chairman Ron Black said, “It’s always nice to see tax rates go down, especially in Hobbs.” Black represents a large portion of Hobbs on the commission.
County Treasurer Susan Marinovich said taxpayers are not required to wait for their tax bill to come in the mail. Tax bills are mailed before or on Nov. 1 each year.
“I want to encourage people, if they want to come in to pay their taxes, they can do it now,” she said, emphasizing, “We just want to make them aware that they can come in now.”
The nearly $1.37 billion increase in taxable property value in Lea County, rounded to the nearest million, came from increases of about $20 million in residential properties, $153 million in non-residential properties, $848 million in oil and gas production and $249 million in oil and gas equipment, according to the state’s report.
Curtis Wynne may be contacted at reporter3@hobbsnews. com .