Preliminary tax levy can be decreased

Photo by Chad Koenen
The New York Mills City Council approved a proposal to move forward with installing irrigation on the softball fields at Lund Park. The work will be paid through a donation by Brunswick/Lunds.

By Chad Koenen


The New York Mills City Council approved a 7 percent preliminary tax levy increase for 2024. 

During its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday night, the city council approved the preliminary tax levy increase, which was due to the county by the end of the month. The preliminary tax levy can be decreased before it is finalized at the end of the year, but cannot be increased. 

City clerk Julie Roberts said the city usually estimates high for unknown expenses like insurance, knowing it could be lowered when the final expenses are determined closer to the end of the year. With new properties in the community the 2024 tax levy will also be spread out a bit more than it has been in the past. 

“We are hoping with the addition of the South Side annexation that the increase will get spread out a bit so there will be a much smaller impact on residents,” said Roberts. “Although it is a 7 percent increase I don’t think people will feel it like a normal 7 percent.”

The city council said it will hopefully lower the tax levy before it is finalized later this year.

In other news

• Accepted the following donations: $7,000 from the NY Mills Lions Club for the Lund Park project and $5,000 from KLN Family Brands for the dog park project.

• Approved a request from Bryan Dunrud to install a sprinkler system at the Lund Park softball fields. Dunrud requested to have the city contribute to the water bill to water the outfield of the softball fields, but that request was not formally approved last week. The cost for the project was estimated to be $16,400 and Brunswick/Lunds is willing to donate $20,000 to make the project a reality. The plan is to install the irrigation system this fall. 

• Heard from Jeff Oakland regarding a reduction in the water and sewer fees for RV lots. Oakland said he was hoping to have a reduced rate for water and sewer fees since most of the lots will be utilized just on the weekends, while staying vacant for a majority of the week. Oakland was encouraged to attend a public utility committee meeting to discuss a fair rate and way to charge the RV lots for utilities. 

• Heard that the public works department recently met with Census Meter representatives to discuss the final phase of the automatic meter reading project. The final phase is to move into an advanced meter infrastructure for usage trending, alarm conditions, control of smart meter technology and real time data collection/meter reading from city hall. 

• Heard the gas extension for Greater Minnesota Gas and all existing service cutovers on 383rd St. is complete and the utility department will work on the abandonment of the old two inch main and portions of service lines in the upcoming weeks. 

• Heard the NY Mills Police Department responded to 114 calls in August. The city council also heard that full-time police officer Tyler Schwartz has resigned his position and has requested to stay on the roster as a part-time police officer. 

• Heard the NY Mills Fire Department responded to 19 calls in August, a majority of which were medical calls. The department also signed a purchase agreement for a new tanker/pumper truck on August 17. 

• Heard Mills Liquors reported an increase in its combined gross sales for August was up by 8 percent from the previous year and the cost of goods sold were down 3.66 percent from last year. Net revenues were also up by 2 percent as a percentage of sales from the previous year.