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CITY GOVERNMENT

Citizens can express views on city spending, taxes in March 8 hearing

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Carroll City officials have set Monday, March 8 for a public hearing on a proposed $18.9 million city budget for next fiscal year that includes a 3 percent increase in residential property taxes.

The public hearing will take place during the City Council’s 5:15 p.m. meeting at City Hall. The meetings are streamed live on the city’s YouTube channel and local access television. Residents cannot attend in person because of COVID-19 restrictions but can chime in virtually. To join the meeting via Zoom, visit https://zoom.us/j/95983471673. Residents also can call in by dialing 1-312-626-6799 and entering access code 959 8347 1673#. Or comments can be emailed to cityofcarroll@cityofcarroll.com.

If the budget is approved as proposed, the city tax bill for a $150,000 home would go from $935.41 to $963.76 — a $28.35 hike on what is considered a median-valued home in the city.

The proposed budget includes an increase in the city’s property tax rate from $11.60 to $11.65 per $1,000 assessed valuation on residential and commercial property. This does not include the Carroll Community School District, Carroll County and Des Moines Area Community College tax askings.

At this point in the budgeting process, the tax rate cannot go any higher.

Because of the state taxing formula aimed at boosting businesses, the increase in the city commercial tax bills will be less than half a percent. Owners of a commercial property with an assessed value of $1 million would only see their taxes go up $46.87.

“The city is in a very strong financial position even in light of COVID-19 and some of the other financial challenges,” City Manager Mike Pogge-Weaver said.

The city expects to be more aggressive in streets work in the coming years.

Some major engineering work likely is to be done in the coming fiscal year associated with an expected $3 million street-improvement project slated for calendar year 2022 on Adams Street from Sixth Street to 13th Street.

Another big topic: how to use debt financing over the next two decades to fund accelerated streets work and potential improvements at the Carroll Recreation Center.

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