BIG SPRING - Taxes are going up for residents living in Howard County. The Howard County Commissioners Court raised taxes Monday by two cents.

The increase was necessary after the Alon refinery filed a lawsuit against the Howard County Appraisal District contesting its value.

The Commissioners Court was hoping to keep the rate of 56 cents. The tax rate is now 58 cents. Howard County Judge Mark Barr told NewsWest9 it was the hardest decision he's ever had to make.

Judge Barr says the county is locked into the higher rate for another year whether the lawsuit is settled or not. This is the second year the county has had to raise the tax rate because of Along litigation.