Everything about Warwick taxes

Posted 6/8/23

To the Editor,

First, Warwick taxpayers haven’t had much if any, tax increases for eight whole years. Not bad Warwick! John Howell was a little surprised that more people didn’t …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Everything about Warwick taxes


To the Editor,

First, Warwick taxpayers haven’t had much if any, tax increases for eight whole years. Not bad Warwick! John Howell was a little surprised that more people didn’t complain about it. I’m not. Warwick taxpayers were clobbered with maximum tax increases from 2000 thru 2016 when I had “something” to do with rallying the “80,000 taxpayers who are paying the tab.” Since that era, then Mayor Joe Solomon and especially present Mayor Frank Picozzi have been very respectful and attentive to the needs of the taxpayers as well as the City budget.

Second: The Beacon reported that 21% of us had a tax increase over $500. That means that 79% had a very small tax increase. Again; not bad Warwick! Mayor Picozzi was faced with the possibility of raising taxes last year but he showed great restraint in delaying the inevitable tax increase. He has consistently satisfied almost everyone by being attentive to the needs of “everyone.” It doesn’t surprise me that today’s news was so acceptable. It’s no wonder to me that he ran unopposed.

Finally, and this should be helpful to those who are trying to figure out how Warwick, or any community, for that matter, calculates real estate taxes. Here are the factors that go into your final tax bill.

  1. Appraised value: This one is simple. Look it up yourself on “Zillow.com”. The appraised value is the approximate price you could sell your house for. Remember: It’s an “approximate”! and it has very little to do with what you actually pay in real estate taxes.
  2. Assessed value: Big difference! The “assessed value” is a combination of the appraised value and the tax needs of the city/town. For example; high tax needs of an urban area like Providence = high assessed values. Low tax needs of a rural area like Charlestown = low assessed values. It might not seem fair, but it is what it is.
  3. The percentage of the assessed value: Cities/towns use this just to hide the truth (I believe). They use 100% or 80% or ???, I believe, just to cover up what is really going on and again, it happens everywhere and has been the rule for so many decades that it is what it is.
  4. Politics: In the years past, this played a strong part in the final cost of real estate taxes. Today, everyone is treated equally and fairly.
  5. Finally, the tax rate: Here’s the good news. The present tax rate of $18.73 per thousand is dropping significantly to $14.76 per thousand. Cheaper is better! Thank you Mayor Picozzi!

The final analysis is this. Real estate taxes (and death) are always in our future. Taxes will always go up while our time remaining on this earth keeps going down. Be thankful we have homes that are appreciating at a tremendous rate (over 20%!) and enjoy every day, because we all have an expiration date. Hopefully, it will be far in the future for us all.

Richard Corrente

Former politician and present happy-taxpayer

letter, letters, taxes


1 comment on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here

  • avamoma

    Rhode Island General Laws are clear as to the basis of property tax. The section is clear. § 44-5-12. Assessment at full and fair cash value. Not some arbitrary figure calculated at the whim of the assessor. Cities and town's don't assess higher in one community or lower in another to raise money. It doesn't work that way. Billing is simple. Total valuation by total budget equals rate. Rate times individual value equals individual bill.

    If the municipality decides to tax at 80% of value... every taxpayers bill is higher than it would be at 100% of value. Just simple math.

    That does not say the municipalities have a say on which group of people pays more or less - it is based on the exemptions allowed to certain groups of people (like Providence homestead) or how they decide to apply the tax based on the class proportion to the whole (again Providence and Warwick

    Having no tax increase for several years may not be in the best interest of the taxpayers when the city has such high unfunded liabilities. Next year will start off as a financial challenge since this year's budget includes proceed from the sale of public property as well as COVID funds that will not be available next year with wide-spread talk of Recession that will have a negative effect on property values/burden.

    Our city faces immense financial obligations. If only the City could win a billion dollar lottery

    § 44-5-12.

    (a) All real property subject to taxation shall be assessed at its full and fair cash value, as of December 31 in the year of the last update or revaluation, or at a uniform percentage thereof, not to exceed one hundred percent (100%), to be determined by the assessors in each town or city;

    Monday, June 19, 2023 Report this