If Colfax County property owners look real close when their tax statements arrive in the mailbox, they’ll see an ever-so-slight dip in the county levy for the sixth consecutive year.
“The levy is down just a little bit,” said Chairman Gil Wigington just before the three-member Colfax County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to OK a $21.5 million spending plan for the coming year that includes a property tax request of $5.5 million.
The 2017-18 budget asks for about $12,000 more from property taxpayers to support county operations compared to the prior year.
The board’s vote followed a public hearing during which nobody spoke.
The 2017-18 budget calls for a tax levy of 29.616 cents for every $100 in valuation, down from 29.921 cents for 2016-17. The county’s levy has dipped about 10 cents per $100 of valuation over the past six years.
The county property tax tab for the owner of a $100,000 home will be $296.16 for the coming year.
Tax bills for individual properties vary from year to year depending on annual revaluation numbers. The county’s valuation for 2017-18, as certified in August by the assessor’s office, is nearly $1.87 billion, an increase from roughly $1.84 billion last year.
A couple of big-ticket items in the 2017-18 budget are an exterior renovation of the nearly century-old courthouse that's expected to cost more than $800,000 and replacement of a couple of bridges.
The county will spend an estimated $1.1 million to replace the bridges, including one on Road 17 that fell into Maple Creek.
The commissioners also set budget levies for the county’s rural fire districts, agricultural society and Platte Valley drainage districts. Levies for the county and governmental subdivisions make up the combined county levy, which will be 37.62 cents per $100 of valuation.
Counties can set a maximum combined property tax levy of 50 cents per $100 in valuation.