Greendale — Village Manager Todd Michaels recommended a $14.1 million municipal budget for 2014 — a decrease of more than 2 percent from 2013's budget of $14.4 million — at a Village Board meeting Tuesday.
The budget would increase the tax levy over last year by one-fourth of a percent. Based on an anticipated 1.62 percent increase in assessed property value, the tax levy increase would decrease the 2014 tax rate by eight cents, bringing it to $7.69 per $1,000 of assessed value.
The budget also would reduce village taxes for the average homeowner by nearly 1 percent from this year, he said. The average homeowner, who paid $1,563.87 in 2013, will only pay $1,548.68 in 2014 – a savings of more than $15.
The recommended budget would benefit the 94 percent of village homes that either reduced in value or remained the same this year, Michaels said.
"Assuming that the assessment on an average Greendale home stayed the same or was reduced in 2013, the (recommended) budget's impact on that home will mean the (homeowners') village taxes will decrease by $15.19 to $1,588.68 from (last year's) $1,563.87," he said.
The reduction in taxes derives from estimates conducted by the village that predict 2013 year-end revenues to exceed expenditures in all budgeted funds by about $128,000.
A primary reason for the excess of revenue is this year's extended vacancies within the Department of Public Works, Michaels said. Because there was a delay in hiring, the amount of spent funds was limited.
"Expenditures were lower than budgeted because of the Department of Public Works' hiring delays and the department heads taking measures to limit expenses in light of the national economic downturn and its effect on future budgets," Michaels said.
Fire Department rescue calls, which were created by the village's paramedic program, also produced an unexpected increase in revenue for the village.
Despite the decrease in taxes, the budget would include an increase in Stormwater Utility charges by 10 cents per month. Because of the state's unfunded requirement to improve stormwater quality, the village will need to offset the cost of street sweeping and storm drain repair. The budget would raise the utility charge from $78 to $79.60 per year.
Despite the increased utility charge, the 2014 budget would charge residents $13.59 less in fees and taxes than in 2013, when the total financial impact cost them $1,672.95.
The budget would continue the same annual cost of $31.08 for the village's residential recycling program.
The budget proposal also includes a 3 percent raise in wages under the expanded merit-based pay system, which includes all village employees with the exception of police officers and firefighters. A 12 percent contribution to employees' health insurance premiums will continue in the recommended 2014 budget.
Two public meetings will be held later this month to discuss the recommended budget.
WHAT: public hearings on 2014 village budget
WHEN: 6:30 p.m. Oct. 22 and 1 p.m. Oct. 26
WHERE: Greendale Village Hall, 6500 Northway
ONLINE: The budget proposal can be found on Greendale's website, Greendale.org.
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