BY KAYLA CULVER

The Long Lake City Council approved the 2020 final budget, levy and capital improvement plan during their Dec. 17 meeting.

The 2020 recommended levy will experience 5.07 percent increase from 2019, which would put the operating levy at $1,013,029 and the debt service levy at $105,556 for a total of $1,118,585. According to City Administrator Scott Weske, it is a $54,006 increase compared to the 2019 payable levy. The gross tax capacity increased $161,318.

How the city pays for expenses is made up of different areas of revenues,which includes 81 percent of the budget from the tax levy, 11 percent is the general fund and 8 percent is from debt service.

Factors influencing the General Fund budget include an 11 percent increase in employee health, zero percent increase in employee dental insurance premiums, an assumed four percent increase in workers’ compensation and zero percent increase in liability insurance premiums.

When it came to employee headcount and salary/benefit cost, the Public Works Director and Maintenance worked have planned salary step increases and a three percent salary range move for other staff. A full-time administrative position also began in Dec.

Revenues for the 2020 building permit are exped to say consistent in the remodel and upgrade category Weske added as well as an expected revenue increase with anticipated developments to occur on Symes St. and Wayzata Blvd W. There is the ability for a one time push of revenue based off the townhomes and 57 unity senior co-op at the two locations.

During the discussion, Council Member Jahn Dyvik expressed his support for the final budget and levy.

“I’m pleased with the work the city has been able to do to hold the tax levy constant for the last four years because that was really important to me, but I fully understand as health insurance premiums increase, we take on new staff, workers compensation rates increase that there has to be a point where we’re going to have to say we can hold it constant no longer but we’re holding the tax rate constant so I’m pleased again to see that,” he said.

The next Long Lake City Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 7 at 6:30 p.m.

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