Editorial: Taxpayers should get informed about leviesFarmington taxpayers can expect to see an increase in the city’s portion of taxes next year, and with good reason – the city is eyeballing a $992,566 increase to its 2012 levy.
Farmington taxpayers can expect to see an increase in the city’s portion of taxes next year, and with good reason – the city is eyeballing a $992,566 increase to its 2012 levy.
There is a plan for that extra money, too. City staff is recommending establishing several funds to help pay for bigger projects, like purchasing new fire trucks, reconstructing streets and maintaining the community’s extensive trail system.
All of those things take money. Money that hasn’t been spent in recent years because city council members have tried to trim expenses in order to lower the blow to taxpayers. But that could change with the 2012 budget.
Last week, the Farmington City Council set up three different open house events to explain the budget objectives to Farmington taxpayers. Council members will be at these sessions to listen to resident concerns. City staff members will be on hand to go through the budget plans and explain how those plans would work, and why those plans are good for the city’s future.
It’s part of an effort on behalf of the city of Farmington to communicate with residents on a very important matter. Council members know times are tough. They know no one wants to pay more in taxes. But planning a financial future for the community is also important.
And that’s why they want to reach out to the residents. The city will post budget information online. Staff is developing information packets to explain the proposed budget plan, and that information will be available to anyone who wants it.
But all of the efforts to reach out to residents do no good if residents do not, in turn, take the time to listen, share their thoughts and become informed. Council and staff are willing to put information out to residents, but so often, those kinds of sessions are sparsely attended.
There are three different sessions offered to residents in the next six weeks. We encourage every taxpayer to attend. To dig up the information online. To ask questions. To give opinions. To try to understand the tough decisions our elected officials are making.
It’s easy to sit back and complain about the increase in taxes. It’s responsible to become informed on why planning a tax increase may or may not be good for Farmington’s future.