Valuation hit impacts village spending plan

Decrease of $7 million in property values forces Saukville officials to revisit proposed 2019 budget
Ozaukee Press Staff

The Village of Saukville’s total valuation dropped by about $7 million this year, which, if corresponding budget adjustments aren’t made, would increase the village tax rate.

The decrease represents a 1.63% drop in tax revenue for the village, or $48,632, Village Administrator Dawn Wagner told Finance Committee members, who began meeting last week to fashion a 2019 budget proposal.

Wagner said the estimated drop in property valuation was due to three factors:            

A successful assessment appeal made to the state by Charter Steel in 2017 that will reduce the company’s tax bill this year by almost $2.4 million.

A new tax exemption by the state on machinery tools totaling more than $3.4 million.

A decrease in the state equalized tax ratio from 100.78% to 95.46% because property has been selling for more than its assessed value.

The estimated assessments were made by the village assessor, Wagner said. The actual numbers will be released in a few weeks by the state Department of Revenue.

If adjustments aren’t made to offset the drop, the village tax rate would grow by about 19.94 cents per $1,000 of valuation. That means the owner of a $200,00 house would pay about $39.88 more in property taxes on this December’s tax bill.

The current village tax rate is $6.94 per $1,000 valuation.

The committee expects to submit a proposed budget to the Village Board next month, followed by a public hearing.

The preliminary budget presented by Wagner would increase the tax levy by $35,358, or 1.19%, to just over $3 million.

Operational spending would increase by $54,988, 1.64% over 2018, and capital spending would go up by $938, a 0.52% hike.

The total increase of $55,926 is largely due to a $20,000 hike in wages and benefits for police personnel and a $21,681 increase in health-care premiums, Wagner said.

Debt service would increase 2.52%, or by $27,357, to $1.1 million.

No cuts in spending or additional revenues were immediately targeted by the committee to make up for the lost tax revenue.

“This is a pretty bare-bones budget,” committee member Jim Nowlen said.

The committee is scheduled to continue discussing the budget at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5, at Village Hall.



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