County commissioners approved a major property tax increase and adopted the 2016 budget Monday.
County Judge Larry Sprowls said it was regrettable that the county had to raise the property tax rate.
ìItís time to bite the bullet,î Sprowls said.
The officials voted to raise the ad valorem tax rate from 34.834 cents to 45.733 cents per $100 valuation in 2016.
Commissioners took that action last month after learning that property values in the county plummeted nearly 25 percent this year.
County Auditor Linda Barnette told the officials Monday that the new budget will use nearly $350,000 in reserves.
The budget contains no pay raises for county employees.
Total expenditures for 2016 are estimated at about $17.3 million compared to $17.2 million for this year.