Once the Assessors have calculated the current total valuation of property and know the amount the Town Meeting has voted to come from the levy, the Assessors prepare a document that shows how much of the value and how much of the proposed levy would come from each of the different classes of property (residential, commercial, industrial, and personal). They provide this document to the Selectmen and Town Council members, who must then vote on whether to apply the same tax rate or separate rates to the different property classes.
Historically the Greenfield Board of Selectmen have always followed the Assessors' recommendation and voted to keep a single tax rate rather than shift the burden to the commercial/ industrial /personal property (CIP) sectors. The primary reason for this decision is that an increase in the tax rate as a result of this shift would have a large impact on commercial property owners for a very small benefit to the residential. In addition, a single tax rate would assure that all classes of properties are treated equally as well as help support businesses in Town
Appears in: Property Tax FAQs