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Breezy Point sets 2013 levy

Breezy Point’s public budget meeting was sparsely attended with only three residents attending to hear a presentation on the city’s budget, expenditures and levy for 2013.

The city council adopted the 2013 levy after the public meeting Monday night, Dec. 3, at $1,719,080. That’s a $9,400 drop from the 2012 levy.

City Administrator Joe Rudberg stated in a memo to the council that adjustments were made across the budget to satisfy council requests to maintain the current level of service, hold no increase on department budgets and work to lower the levy.

Rudberg stated that if homeowners’ property values remained the same or went up, they will see an increase in taxes despite the $9,400 decrease in the levy. He said this is due to a 7 percent decrease in overall taxable value across the city.

Public safety

Breezy Point Police Chief Kevin Merschman reported 173 total calls for service for November. Those included 74 traffic, four traffic arrests, 25 assisting another agency, five theft, 10 animal related, six alarms and 40 miscellaneous.

In other business Monday, the council:

• Approved a prosecution contract with Crow Wing County.

• Set a roads workshop meeting for Tuesday, Jan. 22, at 4:30 p.m. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss potential road improvements in the city, which some council members have suggested at past meetings.

• Renewed liquor licenses within the city, pending a background search by the police chief.

• Discussed the potential for a lodging tax. Council member Otto Schmid suggested the tax, but found that laws restrict what lodging tax money may be used for. He’d like to draft a letter from the council to legislators in hopes of changing the law so that money could be used toward parks or infrastructure. The council took no action on this matter at the Dec. 3 meeting.

• Set a second December meeting for Dec. 19 at 5 p.m. to take care of any business that needs to occur prior to the end of the year.

• Said farewell to council member Tom Nelson, who chose not to run for re-election, saying family and other ventures took precedence. Mayor JoAnn Weaver thanked Nelson for his service to the council.