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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Peshtigo Property Tax Rate Again $4.965 Per $1,000

Issue Date: November 21, 2018

At a brief special meeting on Thursday, Nov. 15, Peshtigo City Council finalized its 2019 budget, and set the property tax rate at almost exactly the same as last year - $4.965 per $1,000 of assessed value, or $496.50 for a year of city services on a property assessed at $100,000. Total tax bill for that $100,000 property, after adding county, school and NWTC levies, will be $19.92 per $1,000, or a total of $1,982.

The tax bills that go out in December will include, in addition to the city levy, the Peshtigo School District of $9.01 per $1,000, Marinette County Tax of $49.19 per $1,000, and NWTC tax of $9.13 per $1,000. There is no longer a State of Wisconsin property tax levy.

Total assessed values of properties in the city for 2018 is $159,701,400, and total equalized is $176,855,800, up very slightly from last year's $171,967,600 equalized value. The TIF district was closed in 2018, so there is Tax Increment District (TID) income is no longer part of the budget. Last year the TID increment was $37,714.

Overall, the city's proposed revenue went up 3.58 percent from last year, from $2,436,697 to $2,567,605, and proposed expenditures rose 5.372 percent, from $2,436,697 to $2,567,605. As discussed at the previous Council meeting, the Capital Expenditures portion of the budget was increased from $123,247 to $226,028. This allows for borrowing money to increase capital expenditures for 2019 to meet some of the long-term big-ticket needs early, keep the tax rate level, and allow the city to take advantage of a one-time opportunity to keep the original Community Development Block Grant dollars in city coffers rather than having to return them to the state as revolving loan fund debt is paid off.

There were no speakers for or against the budget a the 1 p.m. budget hearing, and no one from the public was present. On hand were Mayor Cathi Malke; Clerk Tammy Kassal; Aldermen Debbie Sievert, John Berendt, Brigitte Schmidt, Archer Leupp, Mike Behnke and Jillian Schutte; Police Chief Rick Badgley and Director of Public Works George Cowell.

Votes approving the budget and tax levy as proposed were unanimous.

Malke thanked the Council and department heads for the work they had done to prepare the budget.

In other business, in response to a motion by Sievert, Council unanimously supported a Personnel Committee recommendation to hire Jeff Vorpahl, a life-long city resident, to fill a full time laborer/truck driver/heavy equipment operator/Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator position, subject to passing a physical and background check. He is to complete 6-month probationary period with pay 50 cents per hour less than it will be once the probation is over.

Sievert said the committee had interviewed other candidates in closed sessions, and an alternate had been chosen to be called on if necessary. Cowell thanked the committee and Council for hiring the person his department needs. He said Vorpahl has been working part time, and once he starts the full time his work will mainly be aimed at training to become a Waste Water Treatment Plant Operator.

Sievert said when Council approved hiring Ryan Nemetz for the full time city Police Officer position on Nov. 7 they had neglected to specify his pay rate during the probationary period. Council approved the committee recommendation hat the probationary wage - for the first six months of full time employment - will be 75 percent of the full time pay on Jan. 1, 2019.1


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