Levy increase approved

Published 8:18 am Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Austin residents are going to see their taxes increase by about two dollars per month in 2011 under the city’s approved tax levy increase.

City Council approved the 2011 tax levy and budget, as well as a five-year capital improvement plan outlining future projects and funding for the projects, at its meeting Monday evening.

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The tax levy will increase by 6 percent, which does not necessarily mean people will see their taxes increase by 6 percent. Director of Administrative Services Tom Dankert previously said the average increase should be about $24 per Austin resident for the whole year.

The council approved the measure by a vote of 4-1, with council member Marion Clennon voting no. Council members Janet Anderson and Jeff Austin were absent.

Clennon said that, when worked out, her taxes will raise 8 percent. When asked why this is, Dankert explained that some people’s taxes may increase to balance out those whose property evaluations have decreased.

This tax increase is solely based on the city levy and budget, though. Further increases depend on the county and school levies. Dankert said some residents could actually see a decrease in their yearly taxes.

Overall, the city’s entire budget comes in just under $30 million. Over 52 percent of the general fund, which is budgeted at $14.8 million, is accounted for by Local Government Aid (LGA). However, if the State Legislature cuts LGA during the coming legislative session, Austin’s budget could face a major roadblock.

The year 2011 marks the eighth straight year the city’s tax levy has increased.