HENRICO, Va. (WRIC) — Henrico County finalized a slate of tax relief measures at their meeting Tuesday night, reducing rates on real estate, biotechnology equipment and mobile homes.

Henrico homeowners have already received half of their tax relief, in the form of checks sent out in March. That tax credit was part of the counties so-called “2+2” plan – 2 cents of real estate tax credit, followed by a 2 cent reduction in the real estate tax rate.

That means residents will effectively pay a rate of .83% on their homes, or 83 cents for every hundred dollars of value.

The tax credit was made possible by higher-than-expected revenue from last year’s real estate tax. Under state law, the county is allowed to return the surplus to residents as a tax credit.

“This is yet another way that Henrico is demonstrating our financial stewardship and transparency to our citizens,” said Sheila Minor, director of the Department of Finance.

According to the county, the surplus was driven by rapidly rising home prices in the county – a trend that hasn’t slowed down this year.

“Henrico’s average assessed home value is $322,200 in 2022, an increase from $290,600 in 2021,” a county spokesperson wrote.

With the board’s final vote tonight, the permanent real estate tax rate will be lowered from .87% to .85%, making it lower than both Chesterfield and Richmond.

David Goodall Sr., a retiree and resident of Henrico, thanked the board for sending relief checks in March, but called on them to go further.

“I know that the board has the power to further reduce the real estate tax,” he said. He added that he hoped they would consider another 2 cent reduction in 2024, since he and other retirees were faced with rising home values and fixed incomes.

Got Biotech?

The county’s tax relief package also includes incentives intended for “labs and other businesses specializing in research and development.”

A property tax levied on “certain equipment used primarily for research, development, production or provision of biotechnology” has been slashed by more than half, from 3.5% to 0.9%. That means companies will only be expected to pay 90 cents per hundred dollars of owned laboratory equipment.

The board also approved the creation of a “technology zone” in Innsbrook, designed to encourage high-tech businesses to move into the area.

New businesses trading in one of the tech areas outlined by the ordinance – and bringing with them $1 million in investment and ten new, high-paying jobs – would get waived planning and permitting fees, as well as “other incentives” provided by the Henrico Economic Development Authority.