County budget hearing scheduled for Aug. 19

John Richmeier

Leavenworth County commissioners will have a public hearing next week on a proposed $57.35 million budget.

The hearing for the 2021 budget will take place Aug. 19 as part of a regular meeting of the Leavenworth County Commission. The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. at the Leavenworth County Courthouse, 300 Walnut St. The public hearing on the budget is scheduled to begin around 9:15 a.m.

The proposed budget calls for a reduction of the county’s mill levy of 0.25 mills.

The mill levy is used in determining property taxes.

Official notification of the public hearing as well as information about the proposed budget were published in Friday’s edition of the Leavenworth Times.

Now that the official notification has been published, county commissioners cannot increase the budget more than what already has been proposed. But commissioners still have the option of decreasing it, according to County Administrator Mark Loughry.

“Once it goes into the newspaper, there can be no changes upwards,” Loughry told commissioners last week. “It can only be changed downward.”

If approved, the proposed budget would reduce the mill levy from 37.184 mills to 36.934 mills.

While the proposed budget has a decrease in the mill levy, assessed valuation for the county has increased from $723.79 million to $762.58 million, according to the information published by the county.

In addition to the Aug. 19 hearing, commissioners are scheduled to hold a public hearing Aug. 26. This second public hearing will concern the proposed budget for various other special funds used by the county government.

These other funds include a local service road and bridge fund, which has its own mill levy.

County Clerk Janet Klasinski said the mill levy for the road and bridge fund is charged only to people who own property in unincorporated areas of the county.

The proposed 2021 mill levy for the local service road and bridge fund is 8.424 mills, which is the same as this year’s levy.

There was a delay in publishing the notification of the public hearing for the other special funds which is why this hearing will take place a week after the hearing for the main county budget.

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