Kathleen ‘Mac’ McBride, the City of Northfield’s Finance Director, presented a draft of the 2009 budget at a public hearing during Monday’s Council meeting. She emailed me her Budget Handout (one page PDF) as well as her Powerpoint presentation of the budget (25 page PDF).
See the Nfld News article titled Hearing on budget brings few speakers for more.
The proposed budget is expected to increase city property taxes on a $250,000 home by about $36 a year, or 3.7 percent. Tobe Barksdale, a First Street resident, pointed out that the levy had increased dramatically, almost 25 percent since 2006.
Another resident, Victor Summa, who recently ran for city council, applauded the efforts of the city’s finance director, while expressing distress that in order to balance the budget, city officials had to cut nine city jobs. The net effect of those cuts, city Finance Director Kathleen McBride said, is $317,000 for 2009.
The State of Minnesota releases its budget forecast today. The Strib is reporting this morning that:
State budget officials will release a two-year economic projection today that is expected to show Minnesota facing a deficit of anywhere from $4.5 billion to as much as $6 billion.
On page 18 of Mac’s PPT: “Northfield receives significant amounts of state aids (27% of the GF Budget) – this leaves the City vulnerable to further cuts.”
So when the shit hits the fan today at the Capitol, will we have to wait till the end of the legislative session in May 2009 before we know how much LGA money the city will receive?
We have already received notice of our 2009 state aid amounts. The dilemma is what the potential cuts could be and when they would be made. It is possible that the governor – and the legislature could “un-allot” 2009 aid in 2009. This would cause local governments to have to make mid-year budget reductions.
The City does have a $722,000 “revenue stabilization” reserve for this very purpose. This at least allows us some wiggle room should the cuts occur suddenly.
Griff – does this remind you of the early 80’s when the school board closed Longfellow, rearranged the elementary schools and made other cuts – in response to a similar economic plight? If I recall, the Wigleys played a large role in creating Castle Rock School in response.
Sometimes emergencies result in creative solutions!
In the 25 page pdf, on slide 16 (bottom line for commercial properties) I’m confused because I can’t tell whether changes are due to differences in the tax or the change in the market value for 2008 vs 2009. Can anyone help me out?
Somebody on the Northfield News has complained that not more people had showed up for the hearing on the budget.
IMHO this is a sign that most people feel helpless when it comes to influence taxation, this includes me.
Peter, our founding fathers (and mothers) would be spinning in their graves at the thought that the democracy they sacrificed to create would be received a few generations later with such fatalism and inertia!
That might be so but the fact remains that most poeple are simply turned off by the process.
How else would you explain that close to 50% ofof the people don’t even show up to vote??
There is a sense of helplessness that “we can’t do anything anyway”, which has given the few that still care all the power.
Taxes are a prime example of the overwhelming power of government to control our lives.
I just received my property tax bill and they went up again, despite falling home values????
Yes I can protest and I will, but does anyone seriously belief that it will be lowered?
90% of elected officials are in for a career and not for principal.
Politics is a business and we the pay the price.
If Bob Jacobsen were still here, he’d have been at the budget hearing.
Joel Walinski has this in last week’s Friday Memo, just posted:
Joel Walinski has a report posted to the Northfield News website titled: City could lose funding from state yet this year.
The Editor’s Note reads:
[…] we’re not in such bad shape here in Northfield. City Finance Director Kathleen McBride commented here on Locally Grown back in early Dec when I asked her about City’s vulnerability to further cuts: We have already received notice of […]
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