What’s making news in Minneapolis, reported by the Star Tribune’s team of city reporters. Send news tips to baird.helgeson@startribune.com.

Tax tweak means more public housing security

Posted by: Eric Roper Updated: September 12, 2012 - 6:36 PM

Security has been a big concern at the city's public housing units lately, but at least two more cops will be patrolling the halls because of a property tax tweak on Wednesday night.

The city's Board of Estimate and Taxation, a panel that sets the maximum property tax levies, approved a minute addition to Mayor R.T. Rybak's proposed 1.7 percent property tax increase.

The change, which amounts to about $6,400 more from city taxpayers, allows the city to leverage $193,000 in unused financial disparity funds that it would have otherwise lost.

“I believe it’s a wise and prudent move to leverage this because ... for six thousand dollars we get close to $200,000 to be used to put police in public housing, which I think is something that would be very helpful," Rybak said.

But the 1.7 percent won't be spread out evenly. City staff say that 69.8 of residential parcels in the city will see a property tax decrease in 2013. About 27 percent of parcels will see an increase between 1.25 and 1.5 percent. Another 2.9 percent will see an increase over 1.5 percent.

Following the meeting, Rybak said the $200,000 increase amounts to about two more cops patrolling the buildings.

Pictured: Volunteer Charles Turner checked a garbage chute this May at the public housing building on 1707 3rd Av. S. in Minneapolis. (Carlos Gonzalez)

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