Moscow eyes $10 million bond, hikes in utility rates

Add this on top of Moscow School District’s planned bond, and our property taxes are set to skyrocket again. 

Moscow has never met a tax they didn’t like. 

Initial budget documents from the city of Moscow for next year indicate the staff is recommending the City Council seek a $10 million bond, plus increase the property tax levy and raise rates for water and sewer service.

The city’s proposed $73.8 million spending budget for fiscal year 2018 – Oct. 1, 2017 to Sept. 30, 2018 – is slightly less than the fiscal year 2017 budget of $73.9 million.

More than $870,000 of the proposed budget would go toward pavement treatments, an increase of more than $170,000 from 2017 and more than $470,000 higher than in recent years, according to a letter from city supervisor Gary Riedner to the City Council.
The proposed budget includes a 10-year, $10 million bond, which, to pass, would have to get more than 66.7 percent approval in a May election. However, if approved, the bond issue would fund a new police station – a purchase of the Federal Building from Gritman Medical Center has been discussed, plus fire equipment, street improvements and infrastructure. If the bond issue is rejected, the proposed 2018 budget would shrink to $63.7 million.

The budget proposes a 1 percent property tax increase.

It also proposes a 6.3 percent water rate increase for residential and commercial users and a 4.5 percent sewer rate increase for all classes of users.
A City Council budget workshop will be held beginning at 8:30 a.m. July 10 in the council chambers at City Hall. The councilors would reconvene at 8:30 a.m. July 11 if necessary. The public hearing for the proposed budget and fee resolution is scheduled Aug. 7.