Village tax rate falls by 9 cents

Belgium gets a welcome surprise with zero increase on health insurance costs
Ozaukee Press Staff

The Belgium Village Board on Monday approved a 2021 budget that will result in a decrease in the tax rate.

The rate falls from $6.76 per $1,000 of assessed home value to $6.67.

That means the owner of a $200,000 house will pay $1,334 in village taxes, $18 less than this year.

The levy is $1,047,342, up nearly $1,500 from this year’s $1,045,799.

The budget’s biggest surprise is health insurance rates that a couple of months ago were projected to increase by nearly 25%. That caused trustees to ask the village to seek rates from other carriers.

But when updated rates came in from Anthem BlueCross BlueShield, the village’s health insurance provider, the rates remained the same.

“So we went from a 24% increase to no increase. That’s pretty good,” Trustee Josh Borden said.

“For whatever reason they didn’t raise it,” Treasurer Vickie Boehnlein said.

The village’s premiums remain at $5,310 per month. The village pays $4,779 and employees pick up the rest.

Health insurance premiums this year cost nearly 10% more than in 2019.

The village’s life insurance provider, EPIC, increased its rates from 42 cents per $1,000 to 46 cents per $1,000. Boehnlein said the village will pay a little more than $50 per month for life insurance.

The board held a hearing on the budget before its meeting that didn’t garner much public input.

The budget was approved, 6-0. Village President Pete Anzia was absent.

The Committee of the Whole — the Village Board meeting in committee format — last month approved a balanced budget. 

To make up for a then-projected $5,600 shortfall, Public Works Director Dan Birenbaum suggested taking out $15,000 of fencing at Community Park.

“If we need a place to come up with some money, there’s a place to get it,” he said.

The committee agreed, then decided  to use the extra $9,000 to affect the levy. Other options were reducing the levy, paying down debt or putting it into capital projects.

“There’s enough (money) in contingency. Give it back to the taxpayer,” Borden said.

In other business, the board approved $5,500 to replace a drive that powers one of the wastewater treatment plant’s oxidation ditches.

Components in the drive, Wastewater Supt. Paul Bley said, burned out.

The treatment plant has $15,000 in its maintenance fund to cover the repair.



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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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