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December 10, 2013 | 11:29 AM
BLOOMFIELD — Tax rates for the village and town will go up about 7 cents.

Both municipalities recently adopted budgets for 2014. The village’s calls for a rate of $2.85 per $1,000 of assessed value, and the town’s rate will be $3.38.

Which means the owner of a $100,000 home:

n Pays $285 in the village.

n Pays $338 in the town.

Portions of a taxpayer’s bill also go to the state, Walworth County, Gateway Technical College and local school districts.

It’s the second budget season since the village of Bloomfield became incorporated, and for two years now, the town’s tax rate remains higher than the village’s. The opposite was projected when the village incorporation effort was ongoing.

So why is the town’s rate higher?

“Last year, the town had a 16-percent increase due to the increase in the budget for fire protection,” said Cindy Howard, the town’s clerk and village’s clerk-treasurer, on the phone Monday.

It appears fire protection costs are going up again.

The town is paying $121,431.86 for fire protection in 2014.

Howard said that amount is the community’s share of its intergovernmental agreement with the villages of Bloomfield and Genoa City and 2 percent dues allocation for state fire protection insurance.

Last year, the town paid $116,333.11 for this line item.

The village is paying $243,552.54 in 2014. Last year, it paid $238,666.22.

How did the nearly 53 acres of town of Bloomfield land annexed by the village in October affect the budget?

Howard said the town recaptured $11,955.07 from the village. The town receives that exact amount for three years, she said.

“The village was able to recoup that through its levy increase,” she said.

The village’s property tax levy went up from $1.04 million to $1.067 million.

The town’s went up 5.71 percent, to $381,519.

A closer look

The village has a 2014 budget of $2.289 million, the town $716,527.94.

When looking at the budget summaries for the town and the village, one of the larger number shifts is in the town’s general government expenditures, which dropped from $180,081.45 to $109,286.52.

“A lot of that was legal expense,” Howard said. “That went down about $25,000.”

Why? Because, with the village of Bloomfield’s mass annexation of the town denied by the Walworth County Circuit Court, the expense wasn’t necessary.

“They put money into the proposed annexation … but it wasn’t utilized, so it was pretty much entirely nixed in the budget,” Howard said.

Same as the village’s planner costs, which went down about $15,000 because it no longer needed those services.

In the village’s 2014 budget, that’s part of the more than $30,000 reduction in conservation and development expenditures, which went down to $30,300.

Howard said building inspection and zoning permit costs also went down — by $10,000 for building inspection, and about $5,000 for zoning permits.

Back to the town’s budget, two other reasons for the general fund cut are a $25,000 reduction in insurance costs and no major unemployment expense in 2014 said Howard.

She said last year, the town had to pay about $18,000 for the former clerk.

Some figures, such as the town’s sanitation expenditure, reflect actual numbers, according to Howard.

When the village incorporated, costs between both Bloomfields were split 23/77.

“That wasn’t quite accurate,” said Howard, in instances such as the sanitation costs for the town. Last year’s budget had the expense at $106,600. In 2014, the cost is $123,740, but “it’s based on actual numbers, and it includes Pioneer Estates,” which wasn’t factored in last year, she said.


Tags: Bloomfield-Genoa

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