Crow Wing County Board: Public to weigh in on county taxes, budget
Have something to say about how Crow Wing County spends its money? The county board will host its annual public hearing on the budget, property tax levy and capital expenditures at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the county board room on the third floor of the...
Have something to say about how Crow Wing County spends its money?
The county board will host its annual public hearing on the budget, property tax levy and capital expenditures at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the county board room on the third floor of the Historic Courthouse.
During what has traditionally been called a "truth in taxation" hearing, county residents will have the opportunity to voice their opinions on how much the county collects from taxpayers and where those dollars are spent. The hearing is not intended for residents with questions about the valuations of their personal properties, although staff from the assessor's office will be available to answer those questions separately from the hearing.
This will mark the sixth year in a row in which the Crow Wing County Board has certified a property tax levy with a reduction or no increase. In September, the board approved a preliminary levy with no increase, although the finalized levy is set to decrease by .11 percent. This means the county intends to collect nearly $38,000 less in tax dollars compared to what it collected for 2015, the lowest amount it's collected since 2008.
The largest portion of levy dollars will be spent on public safety, which accounts for 28 percent of the $34.4 million levy. General county government - including administration, human resources, information technology, finances, facilities and the county attorney's office - will utilize 23 percent of tax dollars collected. Among the remaining portion, 17 percent will support community services, 15 percent will cover debt payments, 10 percent will go to the highway department, 4 percent to land services and the final 3 percent will pay for capital projects.
Although the county's levy is set to decrease overall, this will not necessarily translate to lowered taxes for county residents. There are several other factors - including the value of one's property and the levies set by other taxing authorities, such as the city and school district in which a resident lives - that affect property taxes.
The county board also acts as the township board for the First and Second assessment districts, also known as the unorganized territories, and sets the property tax levies for those as well. The First Assessment District includes the area north of Brainerd and Baxter, stretching from Woida Road north to Cinosam Road and east from the Crow Wing/Cass county line to Merrifield. About 5,500 people live in this area, making it the third largest population center in the county behind Brainerd and Baxter. The Second Assessment District, previously Dean Lake Township, has about 100 residents and is located between Emily and Crosby.
Visit crowwingcountymn.iqm2.com to view the presentation on the county's property tax levy and budget ahead of Tuesday's meeting. Click on the "Agenda Packet" located under the Dec. 1 meeting heading.
CHELSEY PERKINS may be reached at 218-855-5874 or firstname.lastname@example.org . Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DispatchChelsey .