Anoka County, which turned heads when it repealed its wheelage tax and later declined a shot at $1 million in Statewide Health Improvement Program funds, on Tuesday voted to cut its property-tax levy by $1 million.
The proposed 2014 budget of $278,047,330 should result in property-tax reductions for most low- and moderate-value Anoka County homes, the county said. The new levy levels will be comparable to those of a decade ago.
“This is the result of innovation at work,” said Rhonda Sivarajah, county board chairwoman. She said that for the third consecutive year, the board has worked to “right”-size county government, while taking advantage of technological innovations.
In July, the county board repealed the wheelage tax, effective Jan. 1, at a time when other metro counties have adopted the tax. Later, the county’s human services committee voted not to apply for SHIP grants, worth up to $1.3 million and used to fight child obesity, promote physical activity and decrease exposure to second-hand smoke. Sivarajah said at the time that the grants aren’t a wise use of taxpayer money, that they’re used for developing policy and there’s “not a measurable outcome.” Others disagreed with that position.
As the county announced the levy reduction on Tuesday, Sivarahah said: “Every day our actions reaffirm our commitment to our mission to be respectful, innovative and fiscally responsible.”