Spending, taxes near flat in county budget planWashington County would spend less on its programs and operations and collect just a small percentage more in property tax revenue under a 2010 budget plan unveiled today.
By: Scott Wente, Woodbury Bulletin
Washington County would spend less on its programs and operations and collect just a small percentage more in property tax revenue under a 2010 budget plan unveiled today.
The budget proposal includes $144 million in operating expenses, down 1.4 percent from 2009 levels. The county would collect about $86 million in property taxes -- up 0.94 percent from this year – with fees and other revenue contributing another $81 million.
The county’s total budget, including infrastructure costs and debt payments, would total $172 million.
The plan, outlined to county commissioners this morning, calls for some staff cuts. The equivalent of six full-time positions assigned to special projects this year would not be continued in 2010. That is on top of nearly 21 positions cut this year.
The county’s finances are being affected by the economic recession, state aid losses and residential property value declines.
“This has been a very difficult year to budget,” Molly O’Rourke, deputy county administrator. “This has not been normal.”
County commissioners took no action, but they will set a preliminary levy Sept. 15.
Board Chairwoman Myra Peterson of Cottage Grove said the budget proposal is in line with the direction commissioners gave earlier this year.
See the Sept. 9 print edition of the Woodbury Bulletin for the full story.