NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk’s Grand List grew at a scant rate of 0.08 percent last year, which will offer no relief to taxpayers hoping the city could avoid a property tax increase as a result of the recommended 2013-14 spending plan.
According to the tax assessor’s office, the city’s Grand List – which represents taxable real estate, business personal property and motor vehicles – was $12.91 billion in 2012, up just less than $11 million from $12.9 billion the previous year.
The Grand List is used annually to set the city’s tax rates. But with the increase slated at less than 1 percent, it has not grown enough to offset the 3.97 percent tax increase voted on Tuesday by the Common Council Tuesday as it set the Norwalk’s spending cap at $311.4 million for next fiscal year.
For the average taxpayer whose annual property taxes were about $6,300 last year, taxes would rise about $255. The Board of Estimate & Taxation will set the final tax rates in May, so the exact amount may change.
Between now and May, city departments and the Board of Education will crunch numbers to search for additional savings. But some officials also may lobby the Common Council to further increase the spending cap. Tuesday night, the council increased it by about $81,000 over the amount recommended by Finance Director Tom Hamilton .
“Real estate and business personal property assessments increased, but motor vehicle assessments decreased,” the tax assessor’s office said in a statement.
Real estate values grew about 0.06 percent from 2011 to 2012 to $11.59 billion, and business personal property grew 1.09 percent to $730.78 million. Motor vehicle assessments, which could drop further under a proposal to eliminate some car taxes by Gov. Dannel Malloy, dropped 0.74 percent to $587.91 million.
Connecticut Light & Power was Norwalk’s highest taxpayer last year, paying the city $337.66 million. Merritt 7 Venture LLC, owner of the 101-601 Merritt 7 office complex on Main Avenue, was second, paying $217.66 million. It was followed by Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., owner of 800 Connecticut Ave., which paid $64 million.
Rounding out the Top 5 were Thirty Five Glover Partners LLC, owner of 901 Main Ave., which paid the city $53.3 million, followed by Twenty-Five Glover Partners LLC, owner of 801 Main Ave., which paid $50.37 million.