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Carbon budgets for tax increase

Published November 22. 2019 12:50PM

Carbon County residents should expect to see an increase in their county real estate taxes in 2020.

On Thursday, the county commissioners approved the tentative $64,962,087 spending plan, which calls for increasing the millage rate by 2 mills to 12.25.

That means that the owner of a home assessed at $50,000 will pay $612.50 in county real estate taxes next year. That is an increase of $100 from this year.

Commissioner William O’Gurek pointed out that this is only the second tax increase in 17 years, the last one being in 2013.

The 2020 spending plan has three components: The operating fund, $47,305,561, up $3.7 million from this year’s budget; capital projects, $14,566,483, down $1.8 million; and special funds, $3,090,043, up $299,000.

Commissioners’ Chairman Wayne Nothstein said that the tax hike is needed to meet the growing costs the county faces.

Big-ticket items include approximately $15 million in employee salaries, a 7.6 percent increase in insurance premiums, 77 new Dell computers that must be purchased since the current Windows operating systems will no longer be supported, an increase in pension fund requirements and $1.5 million in various projects that are planned.

In addition, the county is not expected to see any growth in its real estate taxes that it collects. Inflation in rising costs associated with mandated programs outpaces what the county brings in through taxes.

“It’s not pretty,” Nothstein said. “We have a lot of challenges ahead.”

The proposed budget is now available for review at the county administration building, formerly the courthouse annex, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. until Dec. 11.

The commissioners will formally adopt the 2020 budget at 10:30 a.m. on Dec. 12 during their weekly meeting.

When is this tax increase gonna STOP. Everyone is GREEDY and wants more money. I want more money but Carbon county won't give me any. I'm giving my Social Security raise back to the county. Will have $71.00 less spending money next year, but Liberal Nothstein could care less. I hate that guy.
I guess the new training center that is being built for the volunteer firemen we don't have, was budgeted for, Oh I forgot all that mattered with that project was that Nothstein gets to get his name on the plaque that will be put on the building. Maybe the employees could take a pay freeze like everyone else, and while we are at it maybe they could have their benefit plans reduced along with paying more of their share for their benefits like everyone else. Maybe next election we could send Nothstein into retirement along with his budget busting buddy Gerhard
Ok Dwayne, we get it

You hate the firefighters in this county.. That was your platform when you ran your disastrous campaign, and you still wont let it go
The last tax increase was in 2013, yes, but it was a 50% increase. Under the published CPI inflation over this period of time there would have been roughly a 15% increase in cost. The 50% increase should have covered any budgetary increases for another 10 to 15 years provide inflation remains similar.

This demands an external audit.

What is impact of county taking on the former Blue Mountain Healtcare pension plan? Have you commissioners dumped this debt back on St Luke's now that they took over? If not, why?
So do they really need 77 new computers? Windows 7 operating system is end of life this is true. The hardware itself will run Windows 10 unless the computers specs are insanely under powered/old. A simple google of "Upgrade to Windows 10 for free" returns many websites with directions to upgrade to Windows 10 for free. It is supported by Microsoft, it is not a work around or shady. The IT department is using this as an opportunity to upgrade which is understandable. Trust me, they did not even give the option to the bean counters of saying "well... we could just do an in place upgrade for free" this would blow this opportunity to get a piece of the budget. Make of that what you will.

It takes a an hour or two to do the upgrade. You are using tax dollars, RUN THOSE THINGS TILL THEY BLOW lol!

Just some more context on the Windows 7 EOL (end of life) in January. The software will no longer be patched for security and bug fixes. It will not stop working, but these security patches are VERY important to protect from bad actors.

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