First up is taxes. Those in the CSD will see a decrease in their tax rates while those in the MVSD will see an increase. However your taxes may go up in both school districts. MVSD because of the increase in tax rates and assessed values and CSD because the increase in assessed value may cancel out the reduction in the tax rate.
Specific information for all properties will be available on line, at the assessors office and in the library beginning November 12th.
I have attached two files regarding taxes. One is the assessment report and the other describes tax rates. And I have attached a link to the city’s data base for assessed property values.
Once again there is a shift to residential property owners compared to commercial properties. And while assessed values for commercial properties have increased this year, compared to the previous few years, most of that is a result of utility taxes and a utility settlement.
An additional note when looking at assessed values. There is a difference between values due to real growth and increases in assessed values of existing properties.
I am disappointed that many of our special revenue funds and enterprise funds continue to operate in the red. Most of these funds are able to draw on their reserve funds, however, the golf course continues to rely on the general fund. One bright spot is the parking fund is finally in the black. Let’s hope it stays there.
Regardless of the source of the funding for these accounts, at some point there will be an increase in property taxes, user fees or both.
One way to limit increases to property owners is commercial development. But even this comes with a caveat, as it requires that commercial development will need to outpace increasing city, school and county expenses.
Your right to know. For the first time the city council has provided information on city employee contracts to the public before we voted on them. There is still much to be done as the information was in the consent agenda (Items #21&22. You can read my continuing concerns on how you are informed about city employee contracts in the attached file, Hide and Seek.
For those in Penacook I would suggest you read the October 7th, Library minutes. There is still discussion about closing the Library and replacing it with a pop-up branch.
The possible Penacook “pop-up” branch was discussed at the Foundation meeting and was pretty well received. It was not as supported by the few members who are on the Penacook Friends of the Library. They are concerned that a pop-up branch is not the same as a brick and mortar. There was Trustee concern that with only an average circulation of 4,500 items a year, is it worth a large money investment to keep up?
Some good news. Again this year an anonymous $50,000.00 donation was made to the police department to distribute to individuals and families in the community who may be in need.
When looking at the number of volunteers and donations made by those living Concord we truly are a giving community.
Some thoughts on the election.
Congratulations to Erle Pierce. He now has the responsibility to represent us in Ward 2. I have been encouraged when speaking with Erle, that he is willing to look at ways to finance intersection improvements for the Exit 17 project, other than establishing a tif district. I believe he is willing to listen to you, as he understands how important tax revenue from new projects are for our schools, city and county.
Earle has asked to pass on his email address to you. If you would like to receive updates from him you can send him your email address at: firstname.lastname@example.org
I will not forward or share any email addresses I have unless you specifically ask me to.
We have heard from a number of councilors that perhaps the reason people don’t vote is that you are content with the status quo. While overall there was a slight increase in voter turnout city wide, in Ward 1 there was a 40% increase from two years ago. The incumbent did have an increase in the number of votes he received from the past few elections, but the challenger only came up just shy of winning by 22 votes.
While you can not discern which individual votes went to which candidate, it is obvious that the challenger is responsible for bringing out the majority of the increased participation. This is a clear indication that all isn’t well in Mudville. While not quite a silent majority, it would bode well for those on the city council to remember that just because you ran unopposed, there is a significant portion of the community that doesn’t necessarily agree with you.
On the CSD side, there will be two new members on their Board. As a number of speakers stated at the last School Board meeting, changing policy is not a guarantee that the culture will change. There is still much that needs to be done.
I am again urging you to make sure your voices are heard. With the election behind us and just over a 16% turnout, not many of you spoke up. Even if you didn’t vote (this time), you can call your city councilor, post a letter or an article on Patch or the Concord Monitor, come to a city council meeting or become a member of one of the many city boards. And you can make a commitment to vote next time.
And once again, thank you to all those in Ward 2 for having given me the opportunity to represent you. It has been a privilege and I continue to be humbled that you trusted me to represent you.
This file has the new tax rate with a short explanation:
Breaking News from Concord, NH as well as Boscawen, Canterbury, Penacook, Salisbury, Warner and Webster, NH