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Breezy Point City Council approves 2022 budget, tax levy

City's tax rate is fourth lowest in Crow Wing County

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Breezy Point City Hall
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In its Monday, Dec. 6, meeting, the Breezy Point City Council adopted its final budget and property tax levy for 2022.

The city will operate with a total general fund budget of $2,745,166 - an increase of $254,570 from 2021 - while the general revenue tax levy is set at $2,504,976.

City Administrator Patrick Wussow presented the details to the council and residents, and outlined that the city’s tax rate of 47.55% is fourth-lowest in Crow Wing County, and nearly half the rate of cities like Crosby and Deerwood.

“Monetarily, our city is in really, really good shape,” council member Tom Lillehei said. “We have cash reserves that other cities would die for … We will be debt-free this year. That is a huge accomplishment for a small city.”

The council also unanimously voted to promote officer Joe Garcia to sergeant, effective Jan. 2. Garcia has served Breezy Point as an officer/paramedic since 2005.

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His promotion coincides with the retirement of former chief Kevin Merschman, whose final day with the department will be Thursday, Dec. 30. Former Sgt. Brian Sandell has been the city's police chief since June.

In other action Monday, the council:

  • Agreed to purchase a parcel of land adjacent to city hall at the county’s assessed value.

  • Approved contract revisions for the city’s independent building inspector.

  • Approved a lawful gambling permit for the Northern Lakes Youth Hockey Association at Billy’s Bar & Grill.

  • Nominated council member Michael Moroni to the Sourcewell board of directors.

  • Approved a resolution to accept additional funds totaling $4,180.78 from the American Rescue Plan Act for coronavirus relief.

  • Adopted a resolution calling for the redemption of certain outstanding general obligation bonds in an effort to save on interest costs.

  • Learned that the Breezy Point Police Department in November responded to 263 incidents in the city, an increase of 80 from November 2020. Among the incidents were 11 traffic arrests and five crashes. In Pelican Township, the department responded to 15 incidents, including nine traffic stops and one traffic arrest.

Dan Determan may be reached at 218-855-5879 or dan.determan@pineandlakes.com. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Dan.

Related Topics: BREEZY POINTBREEZY POINT CITY COUNCILGOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
Dan Determan has been a reporter for the Echo Journal since 2014, primarily covering sports at Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus
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