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Osakis holds truth-in-taxation hearing

The preliminary tax levy for 2022 results in an estimated increase of 2% in taxes collected for the city.

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The Osakis City Council held a public truth-in-taxation hearing at its regular meeting on Monday, Dec. 13.

According to a handout provided at the meeting, the preliminary tax levy for 2022 results in an estimated increase of 2% of the tax collected for the city.

The preliminary tax levy was set at $782,694 and provides for the general fund, equipment replacement and debt service, the handout read.

General fund budget expenditures also increased 3% from the 2021 budget, due to capital outlay costs, repair and maintenance, part-time seasonal employees, salaries and liability insurance, according to the handout.

General fund revenues increased from 3% from the 2021 budget, going from $1,332,110 in 2021 to $1,370,246.

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"The council set a preliminary levy in September, which will appear on the notice of the proposed taxes mailed to every taxpayer in city limits," the handout read. "Staff continue to work on the 2022 budget and will present an amended budget and final levy."

Nobody from the public got up to speak or ask questions about the topic.

West Central Initiative

The council also moved to go forward with the West Central Initiative community fund, which was established to assist community projects through monetary donations.

It was said during the council's October meeting that the donations qualify as 501(c)(3), so donors would receive a slip to get a tax write-off.

The council will act as the advisory board for the fund.

Additionally, there is an investment fee of .13-.72%, and the West Central Initiative also charges a 1% administration fee.

Parks improvements

The council also approved a bid for the addition of public restrooms in the Visitors Center building. The bid was in the amount of $30,500.

Mayor Dan Wessel said the Osakis VFW has contributed $5,000 to be used toward parks improvements and the Chamber has given $2,000.

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Board member Laura Backes said Amber Kral, director at large of the Osakis Area Chamber of Commerce, has collected fundraising and donations of more than $17,000 for improvements.

The city also pledged to contribute some COVID rescue funds toward the project, as well.

The council also approved a proposal for the park master plan; the estimated cost of which was $9,800.

The City Park Committee met on Monday, Nov. 30, with Jillian Reiner from Hagstrom Engineering about the park plans for the city.

Council member Al Larson said a city campground, which could also be used as a recreation area for other activities, was among the items discussed, as well as doing something with the Central Lakes Trail.

Having a comprehensive plan for the parks would be about 40% of the process in order to get something going, Larson said.

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OSAKIS POLICE DEPARTMENT