Portsmouth residents will see their property taxes go down in the 2021 fiscal year, the city announced Thursday.

Portsmouth City Manager Karen Conard said the 2020 tax rate dropped by 16 cents or 1.1% from the prior year’s tax rate of $14.86 as approved by the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration.

Conard explained the reasoning was the $119 million budget approved by city council in June that required approximately $91.7 million to be raised from property taxes.

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Assessor Rosann Lentz reported that for the 2020 tax year (FY 2021) property assessments throughout Portsmouth will remain reflective of the 2019 statistical revaluation conducted last year "unless changes occurred to individual property assessments requiring an adjustment to value," the announcement said, adding "these changes may be due to a change in property classification, building permits, corrections, and/or abatements."

Portsmouth Finance Director Judie Belanger was attributed as noting the median single-family property value in Portsmouth increased from $470,850 to $474,900 as of April 2020, or $4,050 (less than 1%). The median single family home will pay $6,981 in the 2020 tax year compared to $6,997 in 2019.

According to the announcement, the newly approved tax rate will be reflected in the tax bills mailed this month, with the first half due 30 days after they are mailed and the second half due in June 2021.

Property owners looking to contest their assessments may request a review of their value by filing an abatement application with the assessing department by March 1, 2021.

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