Tax payment deadline
W. Richard Shelton, Treasurer of Montgomery County, reminds citizens that the second payment (2011-B) on Montgomery County real estate taxes is due on Monday, Dec. 5.
In addition, 2011 personal property taxes and 2012 motor vehicle license fees are also due Dec. 5.
The Treasurer’s office offers several payment options; visit www.MontgomeryCountyVA.gov/treasurer for more information or call 382-5723.
Bond sale paves way for new schools
Montgomery County’s sale of bonds through the Virginia Public School Authority (VPSA) has resulted in producing the $98 million needed to help finance two high schools and the renovation of a middle school.
Reaffirmed bond ratings by two top national bond rating agencies attracted competitive bids for the bond issue from top investment banks. Both Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s affirmed the County’s bond ratings of Aa2 and AA respectively. The debt service on the bonds will require a 10 cent real estate tax rate increase in FY2013.
“If the County is unable to pass the tax rate increase in fiscal 2013 or find other structurally balanced ways to address these rising debt service requirements, negative credit pressure Is possible,” according to Moody’s report.
Construction is under way on the new Auburn and Blacksburg high schools. In addition, the old Auburn High School will be renovated into Auburn Middle School.
Tax relief deadline approaches
Tax relief programs are available to anyone 65 or older, or who is totally and permanently disabled, and who owns and lives in the home (including mobile homes) for which relief is applied.
First time applicants may apply before Dec. 31. (Taxes still must be paid by the Dec. 5 and June 5 payment deadlines. If relief is granted retroactively, the taxpayer will receive a refund.) Repeat applicants must apply on or before March 1, annually.
Tax relief ranges from 40 percent to 100 percent, depending on the total household income. For more details, see www.MontgomeryCountyVA.gov or call 382-5710.
Stay safe this winter
The County's Emergency Services Office, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) and ReadyVirginia.gov remind citizens to check chimneys and smoke alarms.
In light of the earthquake experienced this past August, you are also urged to check chimneys for cracks and damages.
Broken or cracked chimneys can let heat, smoke and toxic gasses such as carbon monoxide into your home and your home could even catch fire. Examine your chimney to make sure it’s not leaning, cracked or missing any bricks. Check for debris that may have fallen into the fireplace and check the mortar between the bricks or stones with a screwdriver to make sure it does not crumble easily. When in doubt, consult a licensed engineer or contractor.
Carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors save lives. Install them in sleeping areas and on every level of your home, away from air vents. Test them monthly and change alkaline batteries at least once per year. As a good rule of thumb, use a date you already know as a reminder to change your batteries – such as your birthday or when you change your clocks.
Finally, prepare and practice a fire escape route with everyone in your home, including your children. Safety comes with being prepared!
Get active with Parks & Rec!
The new Parks and Recreation brochure will be available in print and online on Jan. 10! Check out some of the new programs offered this year, along with the ever-popular Learn to Ski and Board program at Winterplace Ski Resort.
Registration for winter/spring programs will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 17.
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