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Grand Marais City Council sets 2019 property tax levy

Dec 21, 2018 06:40AM ● By Editor

By Brian Larsen of The Cook County News Herald - December 21, 2018

With little delay, the Grand Marais City Council approved a final 2018 property tax levy collectible in 2019 on Wednesday, December 19.

Resolution 2018-26 passed unanimously at the meeting and called for raising $959,021.32, an increase of 2.72 percent from 2018.

As Grand Marais Mayor Jay Arrowsmith-DeCoux explained, the information concerning the 2019 property tax hike had been presented at the recently held Truth in Taxation meeting.

Broken down, the money the city takes in by the increase in 2019 taxes will pay $612,593.00 in Revenue; $34,567.55 to the PFA Water 2004 fund; $63,987 to the General Obligation Bond (G.O. Refunding) for the EDA 2009; $11,273.14 to the G.O. Refunding 2013A; and $136,600.63 to the G.O. CIP (capital improvement program) Bond 2017A.

Upon adoption by the city council, the city administrator is instructed to transmit a certified copy of the resolution to the Cook County auditor/treasurer.

Before setting the levy, the mayor noted that there were the same three typical items on the consent agenda, which was approved 5-0 by a fast-paced council.

Next, Arrowsmith-DeCoux asked the council to approve the three percent cost of living (COLA) raise for the non-union city employees as was granted earlier to the city workers covered by the union contract. “It is our practice to extend the cost of living increase to our nonunion (salaried) employees,” said Arrowsmith-DeCoux.

When asked if anyone had any questions about this past practice, councilor Kelly Swearingen posed one.

Councilor Swearingen asked if passing the COLA would affect a couple of employees who haven’t received (completed) job reviews and one employee who hasn’t gotten a completed job description that is in the process of being redone. “Does any of that get affected by this?” she asked.

“No,” city administrator Mike Roth told her.

With that Arrowsmith-DeCoux called for a vote and councilors Tim Kennedy, Kelly Swearingen, Craig Schulte, Anton Moody, and Arrowsmith-DeCoux all voted for the motion to grant the three percent COLA to the city’s salaried workers.

Last, the mayor asked the council to hold their council reports until the January meeting.

With no wasted words, he called for an adjournment, and the meeting ended 3 minutes and 34 seconds after it began.

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