The current tax structure or the citizens of Kalamazoo and the surrounding area is outlined at the Southwest Michigan First website.
The City’s tax base is diverse with residential, commercial and industrial valuations accounting for approximately 47.99%, 34.67% and 17.34%, respectively, of its Total Taxable Value based on the fiscal year ending December 31, 2006. 40% of Kalamazoo’s tax base is owned by institutions and is off the tax rolls. As a result, the City does not recover all costs on services delivered under the current revenue structure.
Growth in the commercial/industrial State Equalized Value (SEV) compared to residential property indicates whether a city is attracting new businesses or existing businesses are expanding. Although statistics don’t support overwhelming growth in the commercial industry, the City of Kalamazoo has experienced economic growth despite the State’s economic decline. Kalamazoo’s economic growth has been slow but steady. With the economic support of Southwest Michigan First, Kalamazoo is attracting start-up companies from around the State and Nation and possesses one of the most diversified manufacturing environments in the State of Michigan. More than 500 manufacturing firms are located within the region representing virtually every aspect of the manufacturing field. Prominent industries include pharmaceuticals, plastics, medical equipment, fabricated metals, industrial robots, aircraft controls, chemicals and bedding plants.