DANVILLE – The city's share of residents' property tax bills should stay about the same or maybe decrease a little.
Danville City Council members tonight are expected to act on the city’s new tax levy and welcome a new alderman and city comptroller.
The total proposed 2019 property tax levy is $6,820,628 compared to $6,822,342 last year. This is a 0.03 percent decrease.
The city’s property tax rate also is expected to stay about the same. It’s estimated at $2.2641 per $100 of assessed valuation compared this year's $2.2647 per $100 of assessed valuation. Equalized assessed valuation is expected to stay the same at $301 million.
Mayor Rickey Williams Jr. said in talking to Vermilion County Supervisor of Assessments Matt Long, Long says the equalized assessed value might increase by 1 percent.
However, city officials are estimating hopefully the worst case scenario in having the equalized assessed value stay the same. City officials don’t want to count on an increase in case it doesn’t happen, Williams said.
“The average tax bill could go down if (the equalized assessed value) goes up a percent,” Williams said.
Williams also said he wanted to “hold the line on taxes and fees” with the city’s new tax levy and budget. The city council is expected to act on a budget in January.
Tax levy funding for the police pension fund would increase from $3.7 million last year to $3.9 million, while the fire pension funding also would increase from $4.2 million to $4.5 million. The pensions are still at only about 27 percent and 16 percent funded, respectively.
Williams said the funding contribution puts the city on track to be 100 percent funded by 2040. The public safety pension fee would provide about $1.76 million for the fire pension and $1.17 for the police pension.
The casino local tax transfer from the city’s general fund for pensions would be $705,000. Williams said they are estimating about three months’ revenue next year from the casino.
Williams said the only news he’s heard about the casino is that city engineer Sam Cole received a phone call from the state gaming board about the casino application. That seems to indicate the state board is reviewing it, Williams said.
The city could receive a nice "Christmas surprise,” Williams said, or could possibly hear about the casino license application in early 2020.
The first year, the city could receive about $2 million in revenue from the casino. Funding would go toward the pensions and city debt, such as with bonds.
Additional funding from the $8 million or more estimated in casino revenue in future years can be put toward the pensions, infrastructure and neighborhood improvements such as addressing storm water issues.
The library tax levy would increase 1.48 percent going from $1.93 million in 2018 to $1.96 million in 2019.
Williams said part of the increase is due to the minimum wage increase.
In other business tonight, the council is expected to approve the appointments of Ashlyn Massey as city comptroller effective Wednesday; and James Poshard to the city council as Ward 6 Alderman to take the place of Steve Nichols. Poshard worked at McLane Midwest and is involved with the Holiday Hills Neighborhood Association.
Massey is coming to the city from the Vermilion County Treasurer’s office. She has been chief deputy treasurer since February 2018.
Massey is a graduate of Danville High School and Danville Area Community College. Upon completion of her associate's degree from DACC, she continued her education and earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration with a specialization in accounting from Ohio State University.
She returned to Danville, with her husband, Ethan, upon completion of her degree.
Massey is eager to give back to the community she calls home. She also is involved with Danville Noon Kiwanis Club and with the Hope Center.
Massey’s salary will be $80,000. Former comptroller Shelley Scott resigned. Her salary had been $99,845.
Also tonight, the council will vote on: intergovernmental agreements with Danville District 118 for school resource officers, reporting of criminal offenses and providing school security video feeds and radio frequencies; $165,000 in Community Development Block Grant money transfers to demolish the former Harwal building at 101 W. Harrison St.; and authorizing a budget amendment of $102,982 in the city’s information technology division budget for computer and network systems security upgrades.