NEWINGTON - When 2017 comes to a close, many residents will be asked to pay a small and unexpected tax.
Motor vehicle tax bills are usually mailed in June and due in full by July 1, but this has been a special year. It was late October before the state finally passed its budget, leaving towns to collect car tax without knowing how it would be handled at the Capitol.
Newington’s bills went out in October, reflecting the state’s previously adopted tax cap of 32 mills. Come November, Gov. Dannel Malloy signed a new budget, bringing that cap to 39 mills.
Because the town’s tax rate is 36.59 mills, car owners who paid their bills this fall cam up 4.59 mills short.
Town Director of Finance Janet Murphy addressed elected officials on this issue at the Town Council’s last meeting. Councilors unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the differential bills to be issued.
“We’re charging motor vehicle taxes at the rate we should have taxed them at had the first state budget not reduced them,” Mayor Roy Zartarian said.
Bills will be due at the end of January.
To determine your tax liability, find out the retail value of your car and multiply it by 0.7. Multiply that number by 4.59 and divide the product by 1,000. For example, a $10,000 car will be taxable at a $7,000 value. At a rate of 4.59 mills, its owner will be liable for about $32.
Some state leaders have proposed eliminating the car tax altogether. None of them, however, have determined a concrete way for towns to replace the revenue.
Opponents say doing away with the tax would shift the burden to residential and commercial property owners.
Erica Schmitt can be reached at 860-801-5097, or firstname.lastname@example.org.