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Wadena adopts levy that's nearly flat

The Wadena City Council approved a $790,230 proposed 2010 property tax levy after denying tax levy requests for the Housing and Redevelopment Authority and the Development Authority.

"I don't think you'll see much of a tax increase, which is good," City Administrator Swenson said. "I don't think people can afford that right now."

Tax payers should see less than a 1 percent actual tax increase, he said.

"I'd say it would even be less than a half a percent," Swenson added.

The tax levy last year was $742,023, he said.

Swenson strongly suggested the council not grant the WHRA's tax levy request and use this to help the general fund. The council also denied WDA's tax levy request in order to levy back for the 2008 unallotment.

The city was unallotted $81,000 in 2008 and $68,538 in 2009, Swenson said. The Legislature said cities could levy back that amount if they wanted to make up that difference, which would amount to $149,538.

"In discussions with the council it was pretty obvious that there wasn't much interest in raising taxes for the citizens in these really hard times," Swenson said.

In order to deal with the general fund's budget deficit the idea was to forgo, for at least one year, the WHRA and WDA tax levy, which is more than $50,000, he said.

The final levy will be adopted in December.