Property owners in Douglas County will see their property taxes go up by 2.5% for the 2021 tax year.

Char Rosenow, Douglas County auditor/treasurer, provided a very detailed presentation about the county’s $56.7 million budget and $29.1 million levy during the annual Truth in Taxation meeting Thursday, Dec. 3.

2021 Douglas County Budget Presentation by inforumdocs on Scribd

No questions were asked from the one non-county employee in attendance.

The county’s levy increased by 710,808, an increase of 2.5% from last year. Its budget increased by $2,606,355, a 4.6% increase.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

The net levy budgets were also set for the following departments:

  • County attorney – $1.1 million. This is an increase of $43,848 (4.13%) from last year.

  • County auditor/treasurer – $1.4 million. This is a decrease of $67,289 (4.58%) from last year.

  • County recorder – $31,559. This is an increase of $31,364 from last year. Last year’s net levy budget was only $195 because of the retirement of a long-term employee. In addition, revenues went up and expenditures went down, which created almost no levy needed. This year’s levy is back on par with where it should be.

  • County sheriff – $9.3 million. This is an increase of $359,350 (4.01%) from last year.

Here’s a breakdown of other county departments:

  • Public Works: $4,222,979 – 3.6% decrease.

  • Social Services: $4,179,859 – 3.08% increase.

  • Library: $1,115,983 – 7.1% increase.

  • Capital projects: $234,987 – 47.78% decrease.

  • Bonds and interest: $1,988,438 – 1.02 % decrease.

During the meeting, Rosenow offered reasons why property taxes go up and down, and explained that the county board only has discretion over its own budget and levy.

Here’s a look at possible changes that could affect property taxes:

  • The market value of your property.

  • The market value of other properties in your taxing district, shifting taxes from one property to another.

  • The state’s general property tax.

  • The city or township budget and levy.

  • The county budget and levy.

  • The school district’s budget and levy.

  • A special district’s budget and levy.

  • Special assessments to your property tax bill.

  • Voters approve a school, city/township, county or special district referendum.

  • Federal and state mandates.

  • Aid and revenue from the state and federal governments.

  • In addition, the state Legislature may have changed the portion of the tax base paid by different types of properties, and other law changes may adjust the tax base.