FOLEY -- Benton County residents could see a slight decrease on the county portion of their property taxes next year if their property values stay the same, or decrease.

Commissioners passed the 2017 preliminary budget and tax levy today (Tuesday) which calls for a levy increase of 1.8%. However, Benton County's tax base is expected to grow by 2.5% indicating a slight drop in the tax rate.

County Administrator Monty Headley says they've worked hard to keep property taxes down in recent years.

Overall, Benton County's 2017 spending will decrease by about $2,400,000 to just under $43,000,000. Headley says that's primarily due to a substantially smaller road construction program.