County tax askings go up 3.57 percent
By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican
Chase County commissioners will seek an additional $70,190 in property taxes for the 2009-10 budget year. This represents a 3.57 percent increase over their tax request for last year’s 2008-09 budget.
During their budget hearing Tuesday, Sept. 8, the commissioners will seek $2,038,380 in property taxes for next year’s budget.
That compares to last year’s tax asking of $1,968,190.
Total property valuation in Chase County jumped $53.8 million for the new budget year, compared to last year.
The new county valuation stands at $605.87 million versus $552.07 million last year.
The increase in valuation came from increased values on irrigated ground, dryland and grass land in Chase County.
According to figures from Chase County Assessor Dotty Bartels, the increases on irrigated ground ran from 6.9 to 12.73 percent, depending on land class.
Values for dryland increased anywhere from 6.02 to 11.11 percent while grassland increased from 10 percent to as high as 20.45 percent for one particular land class.
All residential owners in Wauneta saw an increase in their valuation with values adjusted up approximately 5 percent after being slightly reduced last year.
Residential owners in Imperial will see no changes this year but those values will be updated during the year.
Commercial owners in the county saw no change in their values for 2009.
Increase limited to 3.5 percent
State statute limits the amount of growth of county tax askings in any one year to 3.5 percent.
The statute does provide for some exemptions from the lid, such as capital construction and improvements.
One of the improvements under consideration by the commissioners is a new building to house the county ambulances and training area, the county handi-busses and office space for the county’s emergency management director.
The building would be located on the east edge of the county lot on Grant Street.
Because of these exemptions, the county’s increase in tax asking was allowed to go to 3.57 percent.
The estimated levy will be approximately .3364 cents per $100 of valuation.
The total county levy, which includes other entities such as fire, cemetery and historical districts, cannot exceed 45 cents per $100 of valuation.
Another 5 cents can be added if the county participates in inter-local agreements with other governmental entities, bringing the maximum levy to 50 cents.
Next week’s budget hearing is open to the public and will be held at 10 a.m. in the commissioner meeting room.