Eudora residents could see a significant bump in their taxes this year as both the school district and city consider raising their mill levies.
And Douglas County commissioners already are moving forward on a budget that contains a 9.12 percent increase from this year.
For the owner of a home valued at $150,000 in Eudora:
• The county’s 2.993-mill increase would mean $51.63 in additional tax. One mill equals $1 in property tax for every $1,000 of a property’s assessed valuation.
• The Eudora school district’s 3.4-mill increase means another another $58 in taxes. A public meeting has to be held before the increase is finalized.
• A 1-mill increase discussed by the city of Eudora would be an additional $17 a year.
The grand total proposed increase? About $126 annually in taxes for that homeowner.
It looks, too, like residents of Baldwin City will see their taxes increase next year. Consider this:
• Baldwin City Council is considering a tax increase of 1.895 mills, and the Baldwin School Board has published its budget authority with a 7.497 mill increase.
The two combined would cost the owner of a $150,000 home in Baldwin City an extra $162.02 in taxes next year on top of the county’s $51.63 increase.
In Lecompton, the tax bite won’t be as significant.
• Lecompton City Council is considering a tax increase of 0.286 of 1 mill, and the Perry-Lecompton school board has published its budget authority with a 0.1-mill decrease.
The two combined would cost the owner of a $150,000 home in Lecompton an extra $3.16 in taxes next year on top of the county’s $51.63 increase.
Both Eudora Superintendent Don Grosdidier and Eudora City Administrator John Harrenstein said the economy is the main reason to boost taxes.
Because property valuations have remained flat, the school district last year raised taxes to cover payments on a $45 million bond issue that was used to build a new elementary school, football field and performing arts center.
To soften the blow of last year’s mill levy increase, the district reduced the amount of money collected for other capital projects and equipment. This year’s mill levy increase is intend to recoup some of that lost revenue.
The school district also has to raise money to help cover the more than $400,000 in cuts made by the state and to prepare for the possibility of more slashes in state funding.
“We have made cuts mid-stream the past two years,” Grosdidier said. “We have to plan as if that cut is going to take place in November.”
Meanwhile, the city of Eudora has already made $850,000 in cuts, which represents about 8 percent of its $9 million budget. A 1-mill increase would bring in about $40,000, which would go toward purchasing equipment for the fire department and to start planning for a new fire station. The council has yet to approve the mill levy increase.
“There has been some discussion that they would like me to explore what can be put in place to ensure volunteers are kept safe during their duties, adequately trained and the proper equipment is used to fight fires,” Harrenstein said.