East Grand Forks Residents to Pay Higher TaxesEAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Residents in East Grand Forks will pay higher taxes starting in 2012, partly because of the Minnesota state shutdown.
By: Melanie Orlins, WDAZ
EAST GRAND FORKS, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Residents in East Grand Forks will pay higher taxes starting in 2012, partly because of the Minnesota state shutdown.
City Administrators are actually working in favor of residents. Council Members are aware of the burden the state of Minnesota has placed on citizen's shoulders. And at this time, the city doesn't want to make the load heavier.
Tuesday night was the last chance for East Grand Forks Council members to express concerns for the 2012 budget.
"As of right now the proposal on the budget is to include a property tax that is flat from last year. Property tax owners are still going to see slight increases on their tax bills next year," said Scott Huizenga, an East Grand Forks City Administrator.
Meaning it's not the city that is increasing property taxes.
"Any increase you see will be a direct result of what happened down in St. Paul last year," said Craig Buckalew, Council President.
"Absolutely nothing that the city has done differently but what's being passed down to us to deal with," said Huizenga.
Scott Huizenga says the number one question he gets is exactly how much more people will have to pay.
"Homeowners will see different amounts depending on their particular circumstance," said Huizenga.
City leaders say that will range between 2-3%.
"About a 10% increase to the average business owner. Well the community does have some needs and of course the easiest way to pay for those needs is to raise taxes," said Buckalew.
Council Members say raising taxes is the only option the city of East Grand Forks has in order to pay for future demands. Future demands include the upkeep of small operations to the city.
There are two small fee increases on utilities: one for street lighting and one for the storm, water, and levy flood wall. Nothing new was implemented, the fee is just for maintenance. The budget will be voted on December 6th.