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It’s just off Interstate 35W, meaning a fairly quick jump into the thick of things, especially now that MnPass lanes farther north make quick work of the trip downtown for those willing to pay.
It’s part of Scott County, meaning it can take advantage of an aggressive program of sharing costly equipment and technology with the county and the three big suburbs to its north — things like excavators, which can cost a fortune yet be rarely used.
“We smaller towns wouldn’t have nearly the capacity we have if not for the bigger-city partners,” said Bob Malz, police chief in Jordan. “Computer-wise, for instance, if we were stand-alone, we’d be hurting. Records, dispatch, it’s a lot of things.”
Yet Elko New Market’s tax rate is lower than other outlying Scott cities.
“If you take a median home here,” Terry said, “and compare what you pay on the same value home in Belle Plaine, Jordan, Lonsdale, Savage, Prior Lake, Farmington, Burnsville, we do very well, and on top of that, what you get there [in a home] is much less than in suburban communities, so the lower tax rate is a multiplier on that value.”
Beyond that, said Chamber of Commerce head Todd Anderson, who lives in New Prague:
“Elko truly is a small town,” as opposed to a suburb which fancies itself as being one. “I grew up in Burnsville and Lakeville at a time when they were not yet fully suburbanized, when 35 was one lane. Now it’s towns like Elko that, as far as small-town living, are the real deal.”
David Peterson • 952-746-3285