Home USA News Woodland votes against 1% property tax hike

Woodland votes against 1% property tax hike

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THE WOODLAND — The Woodland City Council voted unanimously last week against raising property taxes, in part because of rising inflation and, many residents say, higher city water and sewer rates.

On Nov. 21, the council voted not to raise the property tax by 1 percent in 2023, instead voting to keep the rate at zero until the new year. The council also did not raise property taxes last year.

Six of the eight council members were present; Councilman Monte Smith and Mayor Will Finn were not present.

Councilwoman Melissa Doughty said she voted against the tax increase because of the recent economic downturn and questions about the city’s water and sewer bills.

“I just think with everything that’s going on with our economy and our water while we’re trying to figure it out, I think it’s the best course of action for our city at this point,” Doughty said.

Council members John Burke and Carl Chapman agreed with her comments.

Residents have complained about higher water and sewer bills at recent council meetings. Finn previously said the rates are higher because the city has to cover water and sewer projects, including fixing a leaking water tower.

The council also voted Nov. 21 to authorize the city administrator and director of public works to apply for a grant from the USDA to replace the city’s asbestos concrete water main, build a new 1.5 million gallon storage tank and restore filters to the city’s wastewater treatment plant.

The city’s income increased

In a summary of the finances, Councilwoman Carol Rounds told attendees that “our revenue is up,” thanks in large part to the city’s sales tax, and credited to “our big box stores and our retail sales,” but could not say in which locations.

Woodland is home to a Walmart Supercenter off Interstate 5, as well as other chain stores such as Ace Hardware and a Safeway supermarket, in addition to a laundry list of small businesses.

Rounds said revenue is up 5 percent in 2022 and 33 percent in 2021. She said Woodland’s sales tax was $237,000 in September and $188,000 in October.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, retail sales rose in Woodland, but so did the cost of all merchandise. In October, the department reported that the cost of all goods, such as food, clothing and vehicles, increased by 7.7 percent over the past 12 months.

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