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Coralville property taxes to increase

BY MADISON BENNETT | MARCH 09, 2011 7:20 AM

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Coralville residents will soon have to pay more in property and water taxes.

The Coralville City Council voted unanimously with no discussion to approve the fiscal 2012 budget proposal Tuesday night during its formal meeting. The city’s total budget is more than $16.1 million.

For the second-consecutive fiscal year, Coralville’s tax levy will be set at $13.52 per $1,000 of assessed value on property.

“That’s always our goal,” said Terry Kaeding, the city finance officer. “To not increase [the tax levy].”

However, an increase in the percent of a property which can be taxed — set by the state — will cause residents’ property taxes to increase and the city “has no control over it,” Kaeding said.

The effect of that change increases the taxable value of property to $656.50 for every $100,000 dollars of assessed value, an increase of $21.95 from fiscal 2011.

Despite the city’s lack of control over the taxable assessment increase, Coralville resident Rex Brandstatter, who spoke at Tuesday’s meeting, said he still thinks increasing property taxes is the wrong way to go.

“Let’s be clear, the property taxes in Coralville are going up,” the fifth-generation resident said. “You cannot keep coming after the taxpayer year after year.”

Property taxes make up around 36 percent of taxpayers’ total tax bill.

The water rate will also increase in fiscal 2012. The budget includes a 50 cent increase for the first 200 cubic feet and for every additional 100 cubic feet, residents will see a 25 cent increase. The increase is supposed to generate about $135,000 of revenue for the city.

“I’ve been following the budget from the get-go,” said Coralville resident, Jill Dodds. “The city has done a really good job keeping it steady.”

Dodds was one of the nearly 15 residents who attended the meeting.

Sewers, solid waste, storm-water management among others make up the fund, though water is the only faction that will increase.

The budget estimates revenues of about $117 million from city taxes, intergovernmental sources, licenses and permits, uses of money and property, charges for fees and services, among other sources.

Expenditures stem from the general fund — areas such as public safety, culture and recreation, and general government — and the special revenue fund — areas such as traffic safety, street lighting and cleaning, snow removal, roadway maintained.

The city’s general fund appropriates $3.6 million to the police, $3.4 million to recreation, $1.5 million to the library, and just shy of $1 million for parks.

“I’d just like to thank the staff for all their hard work,” said Councilor Tom Gill. “There’s been a lot in these hard times — I’m just really proud of the staff.”


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