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MOREAU — Moreau’s tentative budget has a tax rate increase of 2.5%, a difference of just 2 cents from this year’s tax rate.

The proposed 2020 tax rate would be 96.8 cents per $1,000 of assessed property for the general fund. The town no longer has any other taxed funds. For the homeowner with the average home, assessed at $200,000, the tax would be $193, an increase of $4.

“That’s probably a cup of coffee and a doughnut,” Supervisor Todd Kusnierz said.

The ambulance company and the fire company received a 2% increase in funding, but town residents are no longer charged a fire protection tax. That was dropped two years ago.

“It’s completely covered by sales tax,” Kusnierz said of the fire protection tax. “I think our residents will be very pleased with the structure of the budget.”

The town also uses its sales tax revenue to fund its highway department, instead of a highway tax.

For 2020, the budget proposes adding two laborers to the highway department. That’s the first increase in staff there in more than a decade, Kusnierz said.

They were added because the town has continued to grow, with new subdivisions adding many more roads to maintain.

In addition, the budget adds $37,000 for zoning and $23,000 for planning next year. That will help the town update its entire code.

“We partially funded it through 2020. I don’t think it will be quite done — I think it will take a little more than a year,” Kusnierz said.

The town also began investing savings in certificates of deposit this year, and the interest will be used to slightly reduce the town lighting tax. Each district’s tax levy would be reduced by $100.

“We’re saving them a little bit,” Kusnierz said.

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You can reach Kathleen Moore at 742-3247 or kmoore@poststar.com. Follow her on Twitter @ByKathleenMoore or at her blog on www.poststar.com.

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