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Wadena City Council approves preliminary 2017 levy

The Wadena City Council approved the preliminary general fund 2017 tax levy at $309,300 and total property tax levy at $1,033,175.40.

Much of the increase comes from work on the southeast infrastructure project, which started in 2015 and continued in 2016. The total bond indebtedness for the city of Wadena has increased because of the project and is now at $723,875.40. To compare, in 2015, the city's bond indebtedness was $373,182.

Cities are required to set a preliminary tax levy in early September and send the information to the state. Cities can continue working to reduce the budget until the end of the year. The levy can't be increased once it is submitted to the state.

The Wadena City Council set a Truth in Taxation hearing for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 13, where people can attend and talk about the city's levy proposal.

The southeast infrastructure project is nearing completion with phase two wrapping up this fall. This year's work included street and utility reconstruction in southeast Wadena north of Dayton Avenue.

Businesses and residents in the southeast area between Dayton and the railroad tracks and Jefferson Street to Fourth Street had to work around some road and alley closures during the project.

Improvements included street, curbing and sidewalk reconstruction and replacement of sanitary sewer main, water main and storm sewer main.

Phase one of the project was completed in late 2015.

Residents living in the project area will pay for about 20 percent of the project through special assessments, while homeowners throughout the city will cover the rest through property taxes. The county is also contributing to the project.

Assessments vary depending on lot size but interior lots were typically between $5,000 and $8,000 and corner lots were between $8,000 and $12,000.

The Wadena City Council will have a meeting to discuss the city's Enterprise funds budget Thursday, Nov. 3. The council's regular November meeting will be changed to Tuesday, Nov. 15 due to the General Election Nov. 8.

Anna Erickson
Anna Erickson is editor of the Wadena Pioneer Journal.
(218) 631-2561