A mill levy increase of approximately 1.5 mills was approved when the Great Bend City Council approved the 2012 city operating budget Monday night.
The increase combines with an increase in the city valuation to bring more tax dollars into the city coffers and the plans for using that money were discussed during the meeting.
City Administrator Howard Partington said the addition tax dollars will be split three ways, to fund three important projects.
The plan is for approximately one half mill in value to go to:
• Fund an additional police officer position.
• Add funding for fire and Emergency Medical Services personnel and equipment.
• Make improvements to the Expo Area, especially to concrete ramp area that will be used for the new farm show that has been planned.
City funds for the 2012 budget will be created through a levy of 43.778 mills, up from the 2011 levy of 42.331 mills and from the 2010 rate of 41.480 mills. The city is also experiencing an increase in its valuation with a listed 2012 valuation of $93,507,703. That compares to the 2011 figure of $93,384,327. According to the budget hearing notice from the city, the 2010 valuation was $90,319,564.
During the meeting Monday night, the city council approved the ordinance setting the budget and it also approved an ordinance, required by state regulations, that stipulates the 2012 budget features an increase in the property tax.
Though the city council approved the increase, Partington explained that the city’s expenditures have been significantly outstripped by other local taxing entities.