Levy rate to decrease in Jefferson by 7 cents

The residential levy rate will decrease by 7 cents to $15.15 for Jefferson taxpayers in the budget proposed for Fiscal Year 2017-18. The budget calls for a levy of $12.83 (per thousand dollars of taxable valuation) for the general fund, an increase of 25 cents, offset by a decrease of 32 cents to $2.32 for debt service.

The city council will hold a public hearing on the budget Tuesday, March 14, at the beginning of the regular council meeting at 5:30 pm on the second floor of city hall.

Total taxable valuation increased $21,123,052, or 5.43 percent. Part of that is due to an increase in the percentage of value that will be taxed, the “rollback.” Owners of residential property will pay taxes on 56.94 percent of the assessed value in the new fiscal year, compared to 55.63 percent in the current year.

Taxes levied on property will raise $1,963,000, compared to $1,845,000 re-estimated for the current year. Total revenue is projected at $9,976,000. Of that, $3,295,000 is charges for services (water, sewer, etc). Total revenue includes $2,526,000 in transfers in.

Total expenses are tallied at $9,731,000. That includes transfers out of $2,526,000 to mirror the transfers in.

Expenditures for the Jefferson police department will increase $108,000, due in large part to adding a new patrol officer position. That amount includes a training, a vehicle and equipment. The city plans to purchase a new street sweeper at a cost of $200,000. Road use tax funds will cover that expense. The largest expense paid from local option sales and service tax (LOSST) revenue is street improvements totaling $250,000. Those projects will be the alley near the Stitch, Thomas Jefferson Gardens and Motor Parts; street and curb work around Hy-Vee; and replacement of Deer Run Road in Lincoln Ridge Estates.

Revenues in the proposed budget are $244,900 above expenses. The ending funding balance will increase from $8,480,000 (projected July 1, 2017) to $8,724,000 (projected June 30, 2018).

According to city clerk Diane Kennedy, the fund balance includes 56 earmarked funds. For example, water and sewer rates include an amount that goes into a fund for eventual replacement of the water plant and the wastewater treatment plant. The 10 funds with the largest balances are “project oriented” and account for nearly 40 percent of the fund balance.


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