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Rushford considers rate changes


By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Rushford Government



A work session regarding proposed changes to water and sewer rate changes was held prior to the Monday, December 8 council meeting with Bill Chang and Mark Lundgren of MSA Professional Services. The rates modification seeks to address operating needs, capital improvement, debt service, and existing shortfalls. In addition, the new water rate must implement Department of Natural Resources conservation rate rule.

“I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the projections,” said Councilor Mark Honsey, noting the sewer and water rates were discussed in-depth in 2010 when a new sewer was rate set amid similar concerns. “How could those numbers be that far off?” City will discuss the matter further at the December 22 meeting, following receipt of more information from MSAPS and will hold a public hearing in January before amending the rates. The rate changes would take effect February 1, 2015.

The city is also close to finalizing the 2015 tax levy. Currently, the city is planning a $750,000 levy, a 1.35 percent, or $10,000, increase over 2014. The tax rate will be down five points to 82.02, but that is largely due to an increase in taxable market values. “It’s a moving target; the market values have been all over the board in the last few years,” stated Honsey, seeking whether or not value projections will level off.

For the city, two new businesses have not yet been added in; Loken’s Rushford Inn and Family Dollar. Still, values will hopefully even out. Taxable market values have increased from $73,811,900 in 2014 to $81,474,100 for 2015. “The county is notoriously late for taking values off,” responded city administrator Steve Sarvi. “They’re added back on rather aggressively. I don’t anticipate seeing a large change and we should be getting close to the market values. We want property values to gain.”

In recent years, changes to taxable value have been greatly affected by things such as the homestead tax credit. Automatic county audits of property have also been triggered within the county when property sales hit 110 percent of the value. “It’s nice to not have values look like a tennis match,” added Honsey.

City Clerk Kathy Zacher also noted that property values can change due either a specific property, adjacent property, state programs, or state laws changing, as well as a combination of any of them. The city taxes for 2015 equate to rough .....
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Chatfield reduces 2015 proposed levy increase

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Chatfield Government

Two public hearings were held at Chatfield’s December 8 meeting. The first was an assessment hearing on the 2014 Street and Utility Improvement Projects. The last, was the city’s Truth In Taxation hearing. Properties along Bench Street had i ..... 
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Peterson looks at nuisance abatement

By Kirsten Zoellner

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Peterson Government

The city of Peterson has spent more than a year, in some cases, trying to find a remedy to properties that are deemed in violation of the nuisance ordinance. The properties in question, 10 originally, were in violation according to the city, with ..... 
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Mabel to receive new squad car and street lights

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Mabel Government

The Mabel city council met on December 10, 2014 at 7 p.m. All council members were present. Deputy Dan Dornink attended the meeting to discuss the purchase of a new squad car for the Mabel City Police Department. He acquired bids from Ford, Chev ..... 
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Whalan council approves 2015 tax levy at December 8 Meeting

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Whalan Government

The Whalan city council voted at its December 8, 2014 meeting to approve the town’s 2015 tax levy increase at 2 percent, as previously discussed at its October council meeting. By law, that proposed tax could have been adjusted downward by the c ..... 
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Houston discusses townships paying their fair share

By Angie Rodenburg

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in All Government

The Houston city council held their monthly meeting on December 8. While the meeting was shorter than usual, the council was able to take care of some important matters. The council adopted the final city budget and tax levy for 2015. The total le ..... 
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Spring Valley approves 2015 budget

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Spring Valley Government

By Rich Wicks A regular meeting of the Spring Valley city council was held on December 8 at 6 p.m. Following the Call to Order and Pledge of Allegiance, the council approved minutes of the previous meeting, and approved December preliminary accoun ..... 
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Production brewery approved by Fountain city council

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014
Posted in Fountain Government

During its regular monthly meeting on December 4, 2014 the Fountain City Council unanimously approved a zoning permit and an off-sale brewery liquor license for a production brewery and tap room for resident Eric Luoma. This would include the sal ..... 
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Wykoff approves change order for waste treatment center

Mon, Dec 8th, 2014
Posted in Wykoff Government

Wykoff city council held a special meeting on November 18 to speak with a representative from the engineering company hired to complete the new waste water treatment center. At their previous regular council meeting, a change order had been submitt ..... 
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