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Rushford approves tax abatement for levee project


Fri, Jan 27th, 2012
Posted in Government

A public hearing regarding proposed property tax abatement for the purpose of financing repairs to the city's levee system received little fanfare, perhaps rightly so. According to Mike Bubany, a city consultant with the firm David Drown Associates, the abatement will have no real ramifications to homeowners. The goal is to have the amount isolated by the abatement spread over the entire tax base, so increases in individual taxes and special assessments will not be needed.

Particular parcels within the city were selected because they could show direct benefit from the project, although Bubany acknowledged the entire city will benefit from the levee project. "Through the abatement, we isolated parcels," Bubany continued. "Why those parcels? It's arbitrary. I needed to have enough parcels to cover the principal amount of the bond."

Bubany made it clear that there were no particular reason parcels were chosen, other than to show so on paper. The parcels will have no impact different from any others within the city and the selection will not show on the county tax rolls or property titles, should they be sold or transferred.

The levee project, which is part of the city's Capital Improvement Plan, is estimated to cost $1.2 million, but the city's portion will be half of the total cost, not to exceed $630,000. The DNR will be funding the remainder of the costs. City Administrator Steve Sarvi notes that it is difficult to know the final cost until all analysis is completed.

The total cost of the abatement will not exceed $695,000 and will be paid over a 20-year period, beginning with taxes payable in 2015. It has been structured so that the initial payments will be lower until other bond payments are completed, so as not to over-burden the tax base. Bubany is expecting approximately a $4 per month per household increase in taxes for a typical household ($110,000 to $120,000 value).

The city recently learned that an improved credit rating on the bond is available through the Minnesota Public Facilities Authority. Rushford qualifies for the improved rating, which is the state's AA+ rating versus the city's A credit rating. This rating will allow the bonds for the project to be traded at a lower interest rate and would see the state guarantee the bonds should they be defaulted upon. The general obligation bonds, which will be competitive for lowest bidder, will not be issued until the project plans are complete.

As ot .....
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County highlights priorities for 2012 legislative session

Fri, Jan 20th, 2012
Posted in Government

The county board at a January 17 meeting met with state Representatives Greg Davids and Jeanne Poppe and state Senators Jeremy Miller and Dan Sparks to outline the county's 2012 legislative priorities.

Commissioner Duane Bakke encouraged the ..... 
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Government this week

Fri, Jan 20th, 2012
Posted in Government

• Monday, January 23, Chatfield City Council, Chatfield City Hall, 7:00 p.m.

• Monday, January 23, Rushford City Council, Rushford City Hall, 6:30 p.m.

• Monday, January 23, Spring Valley City Council, Spring Valley City ..... 
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Rushford library talks continue

Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Government

A joint meeting between the city council and the Rushford Public Library Board of Trustees took center stage Monday, January 9. Also in attendance, State Librarian and Director Nancy Walton, Southeastern Libraries Cooperating (SELCO) Executive Direc ..... 
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Spring Valley organizes for 2012

Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Government

The Spring Valley City Council met in regular session on Monday and approved several beginning of the year resolutions.

The Spring Valley Tribune was named the official newspaper. A resolution was passed naming the Security State Bank, Home ..... 
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Government this week

Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Government

•Monday, Jan. 16, Preston City Council, Council Chamber, 6:00 p.m.

• Monday, Jan. 16 Kingsland School Board, 7:00 p.m.

• Monday, Jan. 16, Rushford-Peterson School Board, Rushford Computer Room, 6:30 p.m.

• Tue ..... 
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Harmony City Council discusses Dobie Days issues

Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Government

The Harmony City Council meeting almost got out of hand on January 10 as Mayor Steve Donney had to put a stop to an argument among audience members regarding the Dobie Days celebration and the portion of 3rd Ave. SE owned by Corey Scrabeck.

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Chatfield Mayor defines priorities

Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Government

Chatfield Mayor Don Hainlen briefly commented on the past year and the year to come at the Chatfield City Council's first meeting of the new year on January 9. Councilors Josh Thompson and Ken Jacobson were absent.

Hainlen noted the city has ..... 
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Preston approves three-year contract

Fri, Jan 6th, 2012
Posted in Government

During the Preston City Council's January 3 meeting, the council approved a three- year contract (2012- 2014) with the Preston Public Employees Association (PPEA). Councilwoman Kay Spangler, Councilman David Collett and Public Utilities Commissioner ..... 
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