WAUSEON — Voters here are deciding a pair of tax issues this fall — one for the city school district and the other for the community’s parks and recreation department.
One levy is Wauseon Exempted Village Schools’ property tax substitute that, if approved, would produce a final rate of 3.87 mills for a continuing period of time. The levy would replace an existing 4.35-mill, five-year levy — first approved in 1991 and renewed many times since then — and allow collections on new growth and valuations.
It would bring in the same amount ($835,000 per year) as the existing levy to cover district operating expenses with the lower tax rate.
“It’s continuing, so we don’t have to come back to the voters,” said Wauseon Schools Superintendent Troy Armstrong. “It’s absolutely imperative to our revenue stream.”
If the levy — last approved by voters in March 2016 with 62.4% support — is defeated on Nov. 3, it will expire on Dec. 31.
The district also has a 3.99-mill, eight-year property tax levy for operating expenses that brings in about $845,000 annually, according to Armstrong. It was last renewed by district voters in 2018 with 63.5% support.
The other levy being decided by Wauseon voters is a five-year renewal levy for the city’s parks and recreation department. But the levy is proposed for reduction — from 2.6 mills to 2 mills.
The levy was first approved by city voters (with 62.3% support) in November 2015 to build and operate a new pool in Reighard Park. The pool opened in June 2018.
“The original levy was for the construction and operation of the public swimming pool,” Wauseon Director of Finance Jamie Giguere told The Crescent-News. “The city issued an improvement bond to pay for the construction of the pool and the levy money was used to pay the bonds. The city will be making its last bond payment at the end of 2020. The city is now asking for a reduction of the levy to cover the operating and maintenance of the pool. We are requesting a reduction because the operation and future repairs are not as costly as the original construction.”
The original levy generated $290,483 per year, while the new levy, if approved, would bring in $237,000 annually, according to Giguere.
The amended levy would reduce property taxes for a home with a market value of $100,000 by about $21 per year.