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Town Council OKs levy rate

By Staff | Apr 23, 2010

In a special session on Tuesday, The Shepherdstown Town Council formally laid the 2010-2011 levy rate, revenues from which will be deposited into the annual general fund budget. In March, the Council passed a $2.57 million annual general fund budget for the upcoming 2010-11 fiscal year, which begins July 1.

The city had researched an alternative health insurance that does not have the post-employment under-funding problem that the Public Employee Insurance Agency has. The Town Council unanimously approved this change in health insurance Tuesday.

Dowell had reported the general fund annual cost budgeted in 2010-11 for the post-employment “catch-up” premium is about $132,000. An insurance plan without the funding problem could eliminate this added expense, she had said. This should improve the budget and free up more video lottery funds for capital needs.

The property tax rate this year is higher, but the overall value of real estate is lower, Dowell said. The tax rate can be raised only 1 percent plus the county assessor’s fee rate in the current “reduced levy” status, she added. The weighted assessed value is actually lower than last year. The total projected annual gross revenue increase for the coming fiscal year is only $4,000.

Seventy percent of the town’s real estate tax revenue comes from commercial property, while just 30 percent is generated from residential property.