With all of the talk about increasing property values, a skyrocketing real estate market, and increases for surrounding communities, it's no wonder that Superior property owners have been holding their breath the last week or so.

As everyone who lives in Superior knows, that property tax bill - the one that's payable during the next year - usually arrives in mailboxes right around the Christmas holiday.  For many, the bill - with its annual good or bad news - hits right at the same time that those holiday gift shopping bills start to arrive.

This year it appears that Santa Claus (at least the Santa Claus that drafts property tax bills) is bringing good news.  And, that good news applies on many levels.

First off, it looks like property owners within the Superior city limits should anticipate an overall decrease in their property tax bills.  At least that's what the Superior Telegram [paywall] is suggesting.  According to the Telegram, "[p]roperty owners that haven't made improvements to their Superior home in 2022 can expect a 3% reduction in their property taxes this year after accounting for changes in state tax credits".

That tax bill rate comes as the City of Superior decreased their overall levy for the year - by "about $143,259".

What accounts for the good news - i.e. the reduction in the overall bill from the city?  Growth, at least according to Superior Mayor Jim Paine:

"We have been closing Tax Increment Districts and that value is rushing back to the tax rolls, so basically all of our economic development plans are working and it is decreasing property taxes for people."

Those Tax Increment Districts allow for economic development during the startup phase. Once finished, there are clear-cut plans for those newly-developed areas to revert back to the general tax rolls.  The property tax yielded off of the returning developments flushes the coffers with additional cash; that cash allows the general tax burden for everyone to drop.

Over the last couple of years, the City of Superior has closed on two of the Tax Increment Districts it had, "adding about $65.7 million in new value to a base of less than $10.1 million".  Next year, the city plans to close two more - with a speculative increase of another $30.2 million.

Other portions of the property tax bill are also going down for 2023.  The Superior School District reduced their rate by 1.28 %, and the Northwood Technical College's tax rate dropped as well.

It appears that the only part of the overall property tax bill that's going up is from Douglas County, who's "tax rate rose slightly".

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