Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Town Board approves $1.33 million budget

by Chris Schultz

January 12, 2012

LYONS TOWNSHIP — A $1.33 million spending plan was approved by the Lyons Town Board on Monday with little discussion.

The $1.33 million budget for 2012 is about $172,000 more than $1.17 million 2011

(Figures are rounded.)

Increases in expenditures included about

- $9,300 in General government, from $136,300 to $145,600.

- $13,000 in Public Safety from $181,300 to $194,300.

- $7,500 in Public Works, from $299,800 to 307,300.

- $6,900 in Culture, Recreation and Education, from $3,000 to $9,900.

- $64,000 in Economic Development, from $240,000 to $304,000.

- $76,000 in Capital Outlay, from $280,000 to $356,000..

The largest increased expenditure, in Economic Development, is directly tied to an aniticipated increase in hotel-motel room taxes, said Town Clerk Karla Hill.

She said the town splits its room taxes with the Lake Geneva Chamber of Commerce to promote the town and the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa and TimberRidge Lodge, which are major sources of room taxes in Lyons.

That fund is also where the town deposited $4,000 for engineering fees for a proposed emergency shelter for the Country Estates mobile home park, Hill said.

The project is being held up because of Congress’ delays in approving its 2012 budget.

The $76,000 increase in capital outlay is for road repair and a new ambulance, said Hill.

The Culture, Recreation and Education fund is primarily for Riverview Park. Hill said the increase is to take care of repairs to the park’s lighting and other amenities.

The only fund that decreased was reserve for future capital outlay, which went from about $22,400 to $21,200.

The budget anticipates a fund balance of $268,163 starting Jan. 1, 2012, which will be reduced to $214,758 by Dec. 31, 2012.

While the budget may be increased by 15 percent, it envisions a small increase in property taxes for town purposes.

According to the Walworth County Treasurer’s figures, the town of Lyons’ 2011 tax rate for town purposes was about 71 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation.

That figure, which does not include the street light district, will remain about the same for 2012, according to figures provided by Town Clerk Karla Hill.

That means owner of a property assessed at $100,000 in the town will pay $71 for town purposes.

While the increase in the property tax levy is small, the town is expecting a $120,000 (25 percent) bump up in room taxes and other taxes, from $480,400 to $600,400.

The proposed spending plan also calls for pulling $74,000 out of the reserve funds. According to Hill, the reserve funds will be used for the new ambulance.

Overall, the town property tax levy will increase by $2,784, less than 1 percent, as unanimously approved by the three-member Town Board on Nov. 14..

The town tax levy is divided into two parts, a property tax levy of $338,633 and a street light tax of $13,400.

The property tax levy that applies to the entire town and is up by $2,784 (0.8 percent) from the 2011 levy of $335,849.

The section of the town within the Lyons Sanitary District 2 is also a street lighting district.

The light tax levy of $13,400 will not increase.