Archive for Wednesday, July 31, 2002

County Commission looks to cut mill levy

July 31, 2002

After months of reviewing the budget, the Leavenworth County Commission expects to lower the mill levy by approximately one mill.

County Commission member Joe Daniels said commissioners spent early parts of this week working on the 2003 budget with county accountant Steve Wagner and Leavenworth County Clerk Linda Sheer.

"What it looks like is we're going to be under," Daniels said. "It's probably going to be closer to one mill (lower)."

A mill is $1 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation.

Last year, the County Commission approved a nine-mill increase, 32.031 to 41.138. Taking into account last year's increase, county commission members hoped to lower this year's mill levy by two mills, Daniels said.

During Monday's budget hearings, Daniels said commissioners had reached a point where the two-mill increase appeared possible. However, after reviewing the numbers again, it appears a two-mill decrease wasn't going to work, Daniels said.

"We're still cranking around on it and fine tuning some things on it," Daniels said.

The 2003 budget is expected to account for approximately $37 million, slightly under last year's total, county officials said.

The Leavenworth County Commission is expected to finalize its budget at 1:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 19 at the Leavenworth County Courthouse.

One reason the county is able to lower the mill levy is because the county didn't spend as much on the county infirmary this year, Daniels said.

Commission members turned over operations of the infirmary to a private organization in 2002. Expenses for the county infirmary accounted for a majority of the 2002 mill increase, county officials said.

Although commission members are expected to lower the mill levy, taxes bills aren't expected to be lower because of an increased assessed valuation. The county valuation rose nearly eight percent this year, county officials said.

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