What services do property taxes fund?

Maine communities provide a vast array of services, including police and fire protection, winter and summer road maintenance, code enforcement, planning, economic and community development, issuance of licenses, recreation, parking, solid waste collection and disposal, water and sewer services, emergency medical services, health and human services, and sometimes more depending on where you live. Property taxes on average fund about 50% of the cost of local governments; the remainder comes mostly in the form of state assistance.

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1. Why have a property tax?
2. What property is taxed?
3. How is property assessed? (market value)
4. How is the mil rate (tax rate) determined?
5. How does my property value (valuation) affect the amount of taxes I pay?
6. What services do property taxes fund?
7. Why do assessed values change from year to year?
8. Why has my Homestead / Veteran’s exemption changed?
9. How can I appeal my valuation?
10. How can I appeal the tax rate?
11. How can I submit address changes or corrections?
12. What is the Portland Downtown assessment?
13. Was my Homestead Exemption or any other exemption applied to my bill?
14. Where can I get further information?