Jacksonville aldermen pass tax levies for 2017 at city council meeting

By Blake Schnitker on December 12 at 8:51am

Jacksonville aldermen approved an ordinance to levy taxes for 2017 at last night’s city council meeting.

On an otherwise light agenda, city council members passed the second reading of the ordinance, which set the tax levy for 2017 at 2.5 percent. While most aldermen were in agreement on that 2.5 percent figure, Steve Warmowski made a motion for a 2.1 percent tax levy instead, however it did not receive enough support and was thus not granted.

Warmowski explains where he came up with the 2.1 percent figure, and why he made this particular motion.

“The proposal for the tax levy from the last meeting was to increase the tax levy 2.5 percent. District 117, Morgan County, and all the other taxing bodies in the area are limited to a 2.1 percent tax increase. So I think the city of Jacksonville could have lived with a 2.1 percent tax increase and saved a little bit of tax burden for our home owners. In the past, we’ve come out of the gates with 5 percent annual tax increase because that was our cap. We’ve done it for years and years and year, and I don’t think we’ve explained to the public why we need that extra tax money,” says Warmowski.

Warmowski talks about some of the rules for the city of Jacksonville when it comes to tax levies.

“The city of Jacksonville is able to do this because years ago we passed home rule. I think that was before I got on to city council, but I think part of that discussion was that we wanted to get home rule so that we could do a sales tax increase, and we did that and that’s great for providing local services. But at the same time, we were able to raise our property tax levy increases to 5 percent, but we consistently haven’t explained to people what we need the extra money for,” Warmowski explains.

 

Also at last night’s meeting, the council approved the first reading of an ordinance to adopt a policy that prohibits sexual harassment. They also voted in favor of a proposal for an archaeological survey for the Water Main Protection Project.