Taxes remain flat in Waukesha County budget

Taxes remain flat in Waukesha County budget

Waukesha – Waukesha County government will be able to balance its 2013 budget with a few dollars less from most homeowners.

The county will collect $512 in property taxes for 2013 – $2 less than this year’s budget – on a home with a median value of $243,200. The taxes will help pay for a $273.77 million spending plan for 2013 adopted Tuesday by the County Board.

The total cost of county government drops 3.8% in 2013, fully $10.9 million less than this year, County Budget Manager Keith Swartz said.

Waukesha County spends less per resident than any other county in the state, Swartz said.

Much of the decline in next year’s budget was due to spending less on major capital construction projects than this year.

Though the 2013 countywide tax rate required to generate the levy is $2.11 per $1,000 of equalized value, up 10 cents from this year, the tax bite will be about the same or slightly less for most homeowners because of declining property values.

Residential home values in the county deflated by an average of 4.85% from 2011 to 2012. The median home value for the 2012 budget year was $255,642.

A countywide levy of nearly $98.8 million, up about $800,000 from this year, is needed to balance the 2013 budget. Among other sources of revenue are federal and state contracts and grants, department charges for services, state transportation aid and state shared revenue.

Waukesha County’s tax rate for 2013 will be the lowest among all Wisconsin counties without a county sales tax as a revenue source, County Executive Dan Vrakas said.

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