Elkhart Lake board adopts 2015 budget

by Emmitt B. Feldner of The Review staff

ELKHART LAKE – The Village Board adopted the 2015 village budget with reduced spending but an increase in the property tax levy and rate last week.

When combined with other taxing entities, however, the net result should be a decline of a few cents in the total tax rate on the 2015 tax bill for village residents.

A public hearing for the proposed $3.57 million budget drew no comment and the trustees passed the budget unanimously.

The 5.2 percent increase in the tax levy and the 5.5 percent increase in the tax rate, from $4.16 to $4.39 per $1,000 of assessed valuation, was due largely to money needed to cover debt payments for the village’s two existing tax incremental finance district.

Additional tax revenue from recently-completed improvements in those two districts – at The Osthoff resort and Sargento Foods – will not come in until 2016, according to Village Administrator/ Clerk/Treasurer Jessica Reilly, and the village must cover the first year’s costs.

With the tax levies from the school district, county, LTC and the state added in, the total tax rate before school and lottery credits comes to $18.50 for 2015, two cents lower than the 2014 total.

Trustee Steve Kapellen that village resident N. Joseph Leibham has agreed to accept the position as building inspector for the village. Leibham still needs to complete all the necessary training for the position but will take over for Between the Lakes Building Inspection, which will end its contract with the village next Feb. 1.

The board approved the purchase of a new patrol vehicle for the Police Department from Badger Truck Service at a cost $25,536.96.

Trustees approved walkway permits for The Osthoff for dog sledding demonstrations for New Year’s Eve, Dec. 29-32, and Schnee Days, Jan. 23-25.

Trustee Richard Baumann told the board the Tourism Commission reporteda5percentincrease in room tax revenue for the second quarter of 2014. “Everybody had a very good second quarter,” he told the board.

Bart Wolf met with the board in closed session to outline his building plans for a new facility for his business, Wolf Motorsports. The board took no action on Wolf’s plans.

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