By Josh Staloch
The 2022 operating budget was set at $2,755,078, an increase of $31,878 from 2021.
The tax rate for municipal purposes is estimated at $8.93 per $1,000 of assessed value, about two cents lower than last year’s rate.
Mayor Ryan Kraft said the levy amount is set at $1,606,691, a decease from $1,838,761 in 2021. The remaining budget is funded through various federal and state sources.
”I sincerely appreciate the work that department heads have done to keep budget requests in line and their understanding in paring the proposed budget to a manageable document,” Hutchison said. “The compilation of the information contained in the proposed budget would not have been possible without the outstanding professional efforts of many.”
Mayor Kraft voluntarily took a $2,000 reduction to his $10,200 salary based on changes in the municipal workload since Seymour hired Hutchison as its city administrator in April.
“With the changes we’ve made from how we were structured before with committees and council, also with the contributions coming with adding an administrator, it takes away a lot of preliminary meetings with developers,” he said. “Now that the administrator is doing a lot of that, and we’ve shifted to a committee of a whole and council (structure), and put more on the council president, I thought it was appropriate to bring down the mayor’s salary and allocate some of that to the council president, because they have a larger role with more responsibilities running the committee as a whole.”
Kraft said the decision comes after the city did a market study on other municipalities with similar demographics and found that some mayor’s made even less than he did.
Hutchison said staff is not recommending a water rate increase for 2022 but noted that, due to the continued poor performance of the sewer utility fund, staff recommended the Board of Public Works consider increasing the current sewer rates to address a negative cash flow.