News Flash

Impacts of Levy Limits

Posted on: March 13, 2019

City of Osseo

Osseo

How does the levy limit impact your community's services?  We have had to limit the amount of cold mix we put on our streets and our street sweeping is minimal. Animal complaints are on the rise do to feral cats and other animals that we have been unable to pick up.

How does the levy limit impact your community's budgeting practices and finances, eg, your amount of borrowing?  Our cash reserves have dropped consistently the past several years to pay for updating very much needed equipment. We are forced to run our dump trucks longer than they should be - we just replaced a 1993 IHC and spent $90,000 of our cash reserves to cover the cost of 1/2 of the dump truck. We have not been able to levy enough tax dollars to pay for any Capital Projects/equipment for the past 8 years so we have been forced to borrow. We have been near the top of our borrowing capacity which has forced us to stop any road projects until some of our debt gets paid off. The City of Osseo has not completed a road project since. 2012.

How does the levy limit impact your community's staffing levels and employee compensation?  We have went from a 5 man Public Works Department down to a 4. This has put extra burden on the four employees with no extra compensation and longer hours. Projects are getting put on the back burner until time permits. The complaints have increased due to lack of street maintenance etc. because we can not fund the overtime.

Anything else you'd like to say regarding the impact of levy limits on your community?  .35 of a percent does not even give us enough to cover the cost of our ever increasing health insurance premiums or give employees their well deserved raises. We have now been hit with the Emerald Ash borer and are cutting down several Ash trees within the City. We are unable to replace the trees due to lack of funds.

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