The Bill Comes Due
Now the election is past, and we can see the bill for Rebecca's campaign strategy. Take a look at today's meeting packet, which includes the proposed 2008 rates for all kinds of city fees and taxes. As expected by anyone who wasn't lured in by the council majority's shell game, we see many double-digit (and larger) increases.
Is your street due for repair in 2008? Expect to pay 10% more for your assessment. If your street is getting a complete reconstruction, that will be an extra $500 out of your pocket, compared to people whose streets were fixed this year.
Environmental Utility Fund fees on properties in Maplewood are increasing 10%. For the typical single-family home, that means an extra $4.92 per year.
The really big increases are in the Planning Fees schedule. Have a plot of land that you need divided into multiple lots? The fee per lot created for residential one- or two-family dwellings is increasing from $87 to $1,110 -- a 1,176% increase. If you need to apply for a Conditional Use Permit for a single-family residential property, the fee is increasing 51% from $997 to $1510.
How about a sign for your business? The "Wall Sign Permit" (apparently we expect to issue 50 each year) has its fee increasing 46%, from $72 to $105.
All these fee increases aren't enough to cover the shortfall from the tax freeze, though, so even if they are all approved this evening, we can expect to see additional fee increases and spending cuts as the budget process moves forward.