Huge Tax Increase Proposal in Brooklyn Park
The demand form government just never ends! This from the Sun Post;
Already the end of August … and time for cities to start thinking about how to best spend taxpayers’ dollars as they assess tax levies for the 2012-2013 city budget. Brooklyn Park City Manager Jamie Verbrugge and City Finance Director Cory Kampf put together a presentation on the city’s budget for the council at its August 22 regular city council meeting. The city council must set a preliminary tax levy for 2012 before Sept. 15. The preliminary levy will be the maximum amount of property tax levy the city is proposing to collect in 2012.
Council was asked to review the 2012-13 budget while keeping in mind the following considerations, according to the presentation:
– A minimal change to the tax impact for a median-valued home, while maintaining the appropriate level of basic government services. This is a key objective for the city, and is supported by the budget advisory commission, which has noted that a consistent, level approach to the tax impact felt by residents helps create stability in uncertain economic times.
– Looking at additional investments that fit within the council’s mission and how they impact the budget.
– Continuing to invest in Community Engagement Initiative (CEI), and building on the early successes of this initiative. In determining budget priorities within the CEI, the city promises that new programs and initiatives will be consistent with core values and contribute to the city’s mission, and decisions will not be made without soliciting and understanding the points of view of those affected by them.
– How the city can further leverage shared service opportunities with neighboring communities. This is an important consideration given economic factors at the national and state levels. “As the second-largest suburb in Hennepin County, the city of Brooklyn Park is uniquely positioned to be an advocate regionally for shared services,” the report by Verbrugge and Kampf stated.
Other highlights from the budget presentation:
– The 2012-2013 council preliminary budgets are estimated to be $39.2 million and $40 million from the general fund revenues. One important change in the 2012 budget from the original forecast is increase in city personnel costs and increases in Internal Service Funds, also called chargebacks. One of the uses of Internal Service Funds has been to buy down any proposed property tax increases necessary to maintain a 0% impact on the median valued home. This was a financial strategy used by the city to deal with declining property values throughout the community. The continued use of this strategy is limited, going forward, because of declines in values compared to peer communities.
– Increases in the general fund may come from new developments being proposed in the city. “It appears the commercial market is stabilizing, and investors and entrepreneurs are considering new projects,” says the report by Verbrugge and Kompf.
– Investment income is expected to increase slightly.
– Fines and forfeitures revenue will decrease, due to delays in payment of fines on properties as they go through foreclosure.
– The median value of a home within the city for taxes payable in 2012 is estimated to be $166,100, a decrease of 5.7 percent over 2011 of $177,200.
– The city must certify its preliminary property tax levies to the county by September 15. These levies can be reduced, but cannot be raised. The total levy being proposed is $36,048,714. This is a 7.32 percent increase over the 2011 levy.
– And, speaking of bond ratings … The city’s bond ratings are AA+ by Standard and Poors, and an Aa1 rating by Moody’s. Both are one grade below the highest possible rating. The high rating is due to the city’s strong fiscal management and continued potential for tax base growth.
A 7.32% increase while the value of homes goes down 5.7%???? What entitles you to this Brooklyn Park? Of course this is only preliminary, meaning they will decrease the proposed levy a little bit and call it a cut! Get on the horn you Brooklyn Park residents and tell them you’re fed up with these taxes!!!!