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City may hike levy 5 percent

Lori Sorenson

Luverne’s levy is set to increase by 5.04 percent for taxes payable in 2016.
That’s according to Luverne City Council action at the Sept. 8 meeting when the preliminary levy was set at $1,633,623, which is $78,433 more than the current levy.
This includes $1,275,000 for the General Fund, and $358,623 for debt service as required in the various bond resolutions including $40,000 to partially fund sewer fund debt service requirements.
The 2016 governmental expenditure budget is set for $5,487,012 and revenues are expected at $5,484,249.
Luverne’s government expenses are largely from the general fund, which in 2016 will require $3,874,620 for public safety, public works and transfers out, among other things.
Other expenses are in administration, mayor and council, assessing, finance and elections.
General fund revenues in 2016 will amount to $3,874,620, which will come primarily from property taxes — $1,282,000 — and local government aid from the state of Minnesota — $1,379,639.
Other general fund revenues come from licenses and permits, charges for services, fines and forfeitures and from enterprise funds such as the liquor store.
In budget discussion at Luverne City Council meetings, the mayor and council have repeatedly noted that Luverne residents have the lowest total property tax of most southwest Minnesota cities.
This is due, in part, to prudent county and school district financial management and to a solid base for tax rates.
State law requires local governments to set a preliminary levy in September, and the final levy is certified in December, following truth in taxation hearings.
That hearing for the city of Luverne is set for 6 p.m. Dec. 8 in Luverne City Hall.
More information about the city of Luverne budget is available online at

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