LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Jefferson County Board of Education unanimously approved lowering the property tax rate for the current fiscal year on Tuesday night.

The tax rate will decrease from 71 cents per $100 of assessed value to 70.8 cents, which means the owner of a $100,000 home would continue to pay about $708 in property taxes to JCPS, about two dollars less than last year.

Superintendent Donna Hargens said the district must lower the rate or it would exceed the four percent revenue growth allowed by Kentucky law. 

"You are not leaving money on the table per your authority by law," Hargens told board members. "Asking taxpayers for more than a 4 percent revenue increase would be subject to a voter recall. Many years, in contrast, we are asking you to increase the tax rate (the authority given to you in the law) to receive the maximum 4 percent revenue increase. Not this year."

Under state law, a taxing district can adjust its rate annually, but the new rate cannot result in its revenue increasing by more than 4 percent. Any increase exceeding 4 percent requires a petition that puts the increase up for a referendum.

However, higher property assessments over the past few years have generated additional revenue for JCPS, officials say.

The district held a public hearing on the matter Monday night in which three people addressed the board.

he new tax rates are expected to generate $448 million in 2017. Of that amount, $52 million will come from new and personal property taxes.

Reporter Antoinette Konz can be reached at 502-585-0838 or @tkonz on Twitter.

Copyright 2014 WDRB News. All rights reserved.