Bangor councilors to vote Monday on budget expected to raise taxes by 5 percent

Posted June 23, 2014, at 11:31 a.m.
Cathy Conlow Bangor City Manager.
Gabor Degre | BDN
Cathy Conlow Bangor City Manager. Buy Photo

BANGOR, Maine — Bangor City Councilors are expected to vote on a nearly $49 million municipal budget that will increase the city’s tax rate by $1 per thousand dollars of property valuation during their meeting Monday night.

If the budget is approved, the city’s mill rate would increase from $20.80 to $21.80, or just under 5 percent. That means if a property is valued at $150,000, the taxpayer would pay about $150 more per year.

City officials have said that reduced municipal revenue sharing dollars coming from the state, coupled with underfunded services and increasing state and federal mandates, have forced the city to find ways to cut costs.

The city has eliminated 55 positions in the past two years in an effort to keep up, but it hasn’t been enough. That included six city positions and three additional positions at Bangor International Airport made late in this budget session. Further reductions to the budget would mean loss of police, fire, public works and other valued city services, officials have said.

Under the initial version of the fiscal year 2015 budget, voters would have seen a $1.50 increase to the mill rate, but that was pared down after councilors and City Manager Cathy Conlow asked department heads to bring in reduction plans.

The city’s voters already approved the school system’s portion of the budget — about $43 million — during an election earlier this month. That half of the budget accounts for 59 cents worth of the projected $1 mill rate increase.

The council meeting is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. on the Third Floor of City Hall.

Watch bangordailynews.com tonight for updates.

Follow Nick McCrea on Twitter @nmccrea213.

 

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