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Public hearing to be held on proposed Mason City budget

City Hall in Mason City
City Hall in Mason City

MASON CITY – A public hearing on a proposed budget for Mason City fiscal year 2014 will be held Tuesday night at the regular meeting of the city council.

The budget was designed to follow city council goals and priorities laid out earlier this year, including growing the city’s population, implementing the Blue Zones project model, increased efforts towards public safety, gateway improvements, street paving, and others.

The overall tax levy will decrease from $13.55111 to $13.02255 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation.  This is due in part to the council’s decision to deduct funds from retirement accounts for city employees and police officers and fire fighters while trying to offset an increase in the state rollback tax.

The budget includes less money for capitol improvement projects than was budgeted for this year.  $10,015,033 is set for 2014 while $10,923,231 was spent this year.  Among those projects will be purchases of equipment for the police department, new driveways for the fire department, ambulance equipment purchases, park improvements, airport improvements and water and sewer improvements.

The budget includes a 10 cent hike in sanitation rates to cover costs.  Water rates will not go up.

The state rollback tax was higher than anticipated this year.  The council worked to offset that hike, mainly by diminishing the Human Rights Department and by spending city employee retirement funds.  Mason City property owners will experience little or no escalation in their city taxes.


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