What's News in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin

Assessments and Taxes
“When it comes to property tax, people see a large bill at the end of the year and may not really know what it pays for and how the amount was calculated. The property tax is basically the cost for services that create a good quality of life. When it comes to property assessments, they establish the value of property for the purpose of fairly distributing the property tax amongst all property owners in a community.”

— Rocco Vita, Pleasant Prairie Assessor —

During the most recent property revaluation, the total value of all taxable property in the Village declined by 5.5%. Because residential properties generally saw greater declines in value than commercial and manufacturing properties, the balance of the tax burden has shifted slightly. Over the past two years, residential properties experienced an average decline in value of nearly 12%, while commercial and manufacturing values actually saw an increase in value of nearly 4%.

Prior to the revaluation, the commercial and manufacturing properties supported about 39% of the local property tax. Because these properties held their value better than residential properties in this revaluation, they will now support about 43% of the local property tax. While prior to the revaluation residential properties supported 61% of the property tax, after the revaluation, that responsibility drops to 57%. If a decline in a residential property tax bill occurs, it will be due, in large part, to the shift in value between these major property types.

Because the budgeting process has just begun and property tax levies are not yet known, it is too early to say with certainty how residential property taxes will be affected by the decline in residential property values. We can estimate, however, that if your assessed value declined greater than 8% it is possible that you could see a decrease in your property tax bill. If it declined less than 8% you could possibly see it remain the same or increase.

In the Village of Pleasant Prairie, six jurisdictions levy a tax that appears on your property tax bill. These are Kenosha Unified School District, Kenosha County, the Village of Pleasant Prairie, Gateway Technical College, the library system, and the State of Wisconsin. Each year, jurisdictions develop a budget that helps them determine how much money they will need in order to accomplish their public service objectives. This is called the tax levy.

In Pleasant Prairie, Village department heads are now beginning to evaluate how much money it will take in the coming year to continue to provide core services, such as road maintenance, police, fire and rescue, parks, snow plowing, community development and support services at the level that the community has come to expect. This amount, in years past, has typically been about 19% of your total property tax bill. Once the budgeting process is complete, the Village will know how much money will be necessary to cover the cost of providing these services in the upcoming year.

Once all of the six jurisdictions complete their budgets and determine their tax levy, property assessments are then used to calculate what share of the total of all tax levies each individual property has compared to the total value of the community. To learn more about assessments and taxes in the Village, please click here.

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