Lonsdale council approves tax levy

Andrea Nelson, Contributing writer

The Lonsdale City Council approved to slightly reduce the city’s tax rate in 2019 on Thursday night.

“The focus was to keep the tax levy the same,” said Mayor Tim Rud at the Lonsdale City Council meeting.

As such, the tax levy portion of next year’s budget was approved for $2,070,000. It will increase the city’s tax revenue by $206,600.

Lonsdale City Administrator Joel Erickson said that though this tax levy stays virtually the same, it does result in a much larger increase in taxes for lesser valued homes due to property values and the Market Value Homestead Exclusion.

During the public input portion of the discussion, one resident, Carin Rezac, asked the council why older homes were seeing the highest rate increase.

Rud explained that the valuation is set by the county, not the city and that these property values are resulting in the increase seen on her taxes.

Erickson added that the property values of lesser valued homes are increasing in value at a much higher percentage than more expensive valued homes.

He said that he has been tracking the property tax levy and impact on a sampling of homes in the city for several years and has watched the trends. These properties range in taxable market value from $100,000 to nearly $400,000.

A home that had an estimated market value in 2018 of $153,100 has increased to $177,900 in 2019, an increase of 16.20 percent, Erickson said. Subsequently a home with an estimated market value of $382,800 in 2018 has increased by 1.67 percent to $389,200. This has created a larger increase to taxes payable for those with lesser valued homes by over $150.

In addition to the impact on residents, Erickson went over each department and how the revenue and expenses have been determined to reach the $2.07 million levy. These figures were based on.............

To see more on this story pick up the December 20, 2018 print edition of The New Prague Times or Montgomery Messenger.


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