Le Sueur Co. hears update on library funding

The Le Sueur County Board of Commissioners heard an update from County Administrator/Engineer Darrell Pettis during a special meeting held Tuesday, Dec. 11, on an effort to create a more equitable tax structure for the Waseca-Le Sueur Regional Library System.

Since 1966, the library system has operated on tax revenue from three parties: The County of Waseca, the City of Waseca and the County of Le Sueur. Pettis said that the hope is to join with just Waseca County, and have the City of Waseca's tax portion covered by Waseca County, making it a twoparty system. He explained that the two-party system would benefit each entity. Residents in the City of Waseca would no longer pay for the library system through both city and county taxes, and taxation would fall in line with the state statute. He added that currently, the funding splits between the three are not logical.

"The statute states that property in each county that has the same taxable value should be taxed the same and right now it is not,"

Pettis said. "This (proposal) would equalize taxation in both counties." Pettis added that another advantage would be the ease of working in a two-party system rather than three when it comes to decision making.

District 2 County Commissioner Joe Connolly commented: "This will make our library system stronger."

Pettis said he will continue meeting with the other parties with hopes of having a new joint powers agreement in place by tax year 2014.