By Patty MacDonald, January 26, 2022
I have long thought of our Hot Springs Village POA monthly assessment as a TAX that supports my community. True, it is not an ad valorem tax, like property or sales taxes, which means it is not based on the value of the underlying object being taxed. (Our POA will dispute my definition vehemently on the grounds that since the Village is not incorporated, it cannot impose a tax.) Nevertheless, I have to pay that bill or face consequences.
Before the recent increase from $69 to $90 in our monthly fee assessments, we were all paying $830 a year to support Hot Springs Village. Those fees paid our POA staff, the firemen/police plus their equipment and gate security, water and sewer treatment plants, bonded debt, streets, 9 golf courses, and 8 lakes, as well as an auditorium and other amenities for a population of about 15,000 Villagers. (I have omitted the $45 fee on unimproved lots because there was too much variance for me to wrap my head around.)
Since 2007 the millage rate for Fountain Lake School District has been 34.8 mills. The calculation for property taxes is appraised value X .20 = assessed value X millage rate = tax owed. Example: If your home is appraised at $250,000 X .20 = $50,000 assessed value X 34.8 mills = $1,740 per year. For years we have been paying almost 50% more taxes to Fountain Lake School District annually than we have paid in POA assessments, which support our entire Village maintenance and operations!
This ballot is asking us to increase our millage rate by 5 mills to 39.8 mills. If it passes, that same $250,000 house will pay an increase of $250 more in school taxes every year for the next 30 years. Everyone will pay more, including those whose tax bills are otherwise frozen. We agree that schools cost money, but maintaining our quality of life and our investments in Hot Springs Village have created the money machine that feeds FLSD and Jessieville schools. Vote NO! to higher FLSD taxes.
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Three Ways to Cast Your Vote
The three voting options for the proposed 5 mill increase are (1) regular Special Election Voting, (2) Absentee Voting, and (3) Early Voting.
***There will be no polling places inside the Village Gates.***
(1) Special Election Voting
Regular Special Election Voting is on February 8, 2022. There are three voting locations where FLSD Villagers can cast their votes on February 8. Polls are open from 7:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m at all locations.
- FLSD Campus
- Community Baptist Church, Hwy. 7 N.
- USA Self-Storage, (Old Cranfords), in the East Gate Plaza
(2) Absentee Voting
For more information you can call:
- Garland County taxpayers in FLSD contact County Clerk – 501-622-3610
- Saline County taxpayers in FLSD contact County Clerk – 501-303-5630
Click here to check your voter registration information – confirm your address, party association, ballot status, and polling place locations.
(3) Early Voting
Early voting is:
- Garland County Election Commission Office at 649 A Ouachita Avenue, Hot Springs, February 1-7, 2022, (closed Saturday & Sunday) from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Community Baptist Church, Hwy. 7 N. February 1st-4th, and 7th, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Questions? Email NoFLSDmillageincrease@mail.com
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