The calculation of property tax is governed by Utah Law, primarily Title 59, Chapter 2 of Utah Code Annotated. In some situations, the calculation of property tax can be complex. This summary is intended to provide a simple explanation of the property tax system and is not intended to be an exposition of the law. This summary should not be relied upon, may not fully describe your circumstance and is not binding on the County Auditor or the County. Persons interested in the specifics are directed to the statutes, to the case law interpreting the statutes, and to competent legal counsel.
Property owners pay property tax to taxing entities—such as counties, cities, school districts, special service districts—that provide public services. Each year, your property tax is calculated by multiplying the taxable value of your property by that year’s tax rate for each taxing entity in your tax district. This is the key equation for each taxing entity:
Taxable Value x Tax Rate = Property Tax
Each year both the taxable value and the tax rate will change. Each year, the Salt Lake County Auditor mails a “Notice of Property Valuation and Tax Changes” to you that notifies you of the calculation of your property tax that year and what you may do if you disagree.
The aggregate property tax is the total property tax that is collected by a taxing entity from all the property within its boundaries in a year. The aggregate property tax for each taxing entity can be found below.
The County Auditor provides the certified tax rate to each taxing entity each year. The certified tax rate is calculated by dividing the prior year aggregate property tax by the current year aggregate property value of all property within the boundaries of the taxing entity as follows:
Aggregate Property Tax ÷ Aggregate Property Value = Certified Tax Rate
Certified tax rates might not be the same each year. If the aggregate property value of all property within the boundaries of the taxing entity goes down, then the certified tax rate will go up. If the aggregate property value of all properties within the boundaries of the taxing entity goes up, then the certified tax rate will go down.
A taxing entity is a city, county, special service district, school district, or other governmental entity that may levy a property tax on property located within its boundaries. These taxes pay for the cost of public services. In addition to property taxes, taxing entities may fund services by charging fees, assessments, or through other types of revenue. Certain property taxes have limits imposed by Utah law.
A list of taxing entities in Salt Lake County, including contact information and information regarding public hearings, can be found below