WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – The state Senate on Tuesday unanimously approved SB 97, which keeps the city of Wilmington from taxing residents of Monkey Junction annexed into the city limits for six months of 2012. The "Property Tax/Deannexation Bill" now moves into the state House for debate.
"I appreciate the Senate's unanimous support of my bill to prevent the taxation of the de-annexed areas of New Hanover County," Goolsby said in a statement to WECT.
The Wilmington City Attorney's Office initially found the state constitution would prohibit the tax exemption for Monkey Junction property owners, but Goolsby was able to find an alternative after being approached by the city.
Goolsby's bill prohibits cities from charging city taxes for properties that aren't inside the city limits for at least six months.
About 1,000 acres of Monkey Junction was officially part of the City from January to July, 2012. In the summer of 2012, the General Assembly began requiring cities to get approval from a majority of property owners before involuntary annexations can go forward.
"We don't want to bill these Monkey Junction residents for such a short time and for such limited city operational costs if at all possible - it doesn't seem fair with all the uncertainty surrounding this situation," said Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo after a recent meeting with the local delegation to the General Assembly. "Sen. Goolsby has been very helpful in finding what we hope will be a solution supported by the full General Assembly. We very much appreciate the support of our local delegation and look forward to resolving this situation as soon as possible."
Rep. Ted Davis, R-New Hanover, is expected to coordinate the bill in the NC House of Representatives if approved by the Senate.
According to Talbert, a city projection of the tax revenue from the area is estimated at approximately $100,000 for that six-month period.
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