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Public budget hearings: Your tax money is at stakeTell North Platte what you think
Photo by George Lauby
Bernice Ziegler

It is budget time and you need to work fast. Some have already approved budgets. Look at your real and personal property tax statement. It lists who is responsible for the money they need from you.

The county is only one of those listed, but is also responsible for mailing and collecting all the money.

The Lincoln County Commissioners will have a public hearing on Monday, Sept. 11 at 10 a.m. for their budget. The hearing is during their regular meeting at the Lincoln County Courthouse.

The North Platte Public School Board of Education will have their public hearing at 5 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 11 at the McKinley Education Center.

My observation would indicate that the proposed 2017 tax rate for Lincoln County will be reduced by about 0.008331. Their total budget will increase by about $107,000, unless last minute changes are made.

Pretty good work.

The North Platte Public School Board is increasing their total budget by $1,745,426. The property valuation for the school district has increased by $150,021,988, allowing their tax rate to remain flat, or approximately 1.1799 (year 2016 was 1.181.)

Not good news, if your property increased in value – so probably will your taxes. Sorry.

The North Platte Public School District’s request comprises, by far, the most of your local tax money. We must encourage them to reduce spending. We have good schools and administrative personnel capable of figuring out how to work with less rather than more.

If we put our foot down, I’ll bet they could do it, and a good job at that. They just have not been pressured or had the opportunity or been challenged enough.

It is getting late to make changes, as I have tried to suggest each month, but it is not too late. If you want to lower taxes, we all must let the North Platte school board know they have our support and encouragement to promote significant spending reductions, along with cooperation from their employees.

See you on Monday, Sept. 11 at 10 a.m. at the Lincoln County Courthouse, and at 5 p.m. at the McKinley Education Center.

By Bernice Ziegler, North Platte taxpayer 

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 9/8/2017
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