St. Marys To Raise Property Taxes For The First Time In 10 Years | New
ST. MARYS – The publication ordinance providing for the levy and assessment of fiscal taxes for the year 2022 was approved by members of the city council of St. Marys on Monday. Ultimately, the budget includes both income tax increases and income tax increases.
St. Marys staff and board members have worked throughout the budget season to find a solution to address a revenue shortfall, increased costs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and several other factors during “a time of uncertainty,” according to the budget announcement.
Ultimately, the proposed changes for 2022 to the city’s budget include:
An increase in the property tax of 1 million.
“Property taxes have not been increased in the town of St. Marys since 2011. Meanwhile, over the past decade, the cost of living has increased by 17.8%,” the budget proposal says. .
An income tax increase (EIT) from 1.2 percent to 1.5 percent.
Every year, said City Manager Joe Fleming, it’s important to get this information out to the public and educate them about the kinds of things that this budget money helps pay for.
Mayor Chris Pletcher noted that property taxes have not increased for a decade. Half of these funds will go to Parks and Recreation in the Town of St. Marys. The EIT is divided within the St. Marys area school district.
“This combined tax increase is very modest,” he said. “The total tax increase for the average city resident is $ 165 per year, or just over $ 3 per week. “
These additional funds will also be used for the capacities of street teams, grants, connectivity with city departments and services and infrastructure projects.
The city was operating in deficit in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, taking no corrective action in the 2021 budget and running a deficit of $ 200,000, according to the 2022 proposal.
“As these deficits continue to impact our local economy, we face tough budget decisions,” the proposal says. “We either need to find a way to generate additional income or reduce investment in critical infrastructure or essential services. “
Raising taxes was not an easy decision, and something “nobody wanted to do,” Councilor Andrew Mohney said at Monday’s meeting, but it is now inevitable. However, there are positive aspects to the situation.
The city has not been able to deal with issues such as sewage and infrastructure issues because it has not raised taxes for 10 years, he said.
“While no council wants to be the only one to do it, I hope that as a community we can understand why and the need to have to do it,” he said. “At the end of the day, it’s about making St. Marys the best it can be.”
St. Marys Parks is a cause close to Mohney’s heart, he continued, and part of it goes to support that. This will make room for other capital improvement projects.
The 2022 budget will be available for viewing at the St. Marys Public Library, Elk County Courthouse, St. Marys Town Hall and www.stmaryspa.gov.