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Most towns’ levies in the county will remain about the same

October 5, 2018

MADISON — With the exception of Newman Grove, which just passed a school bond issue, most property tax owners in Madison County will have about the same levy they did the previous year — give or take a couple of cents.

Based on the official consolidated levies that were established Tuesday by the Madison County commissioners, Norfolk’s levy also remained about the same.

In May, voters in the Newman Grove school district approved a $9.5 million bond issue that includes additions and renovations to the district’s existing elementary school building and constructing a new vocational agriculture building.

Don’t feel too bad for Newman Grove taxpayers, though. Even with that bond, the city’s residents have the lowest property tax levies in the county — by far.

The only ones close are Madison and Battle Creek, but they are both at least 21 cents higher.

The county commissioners — meeting as a board of equalization — officially adopted the overall property tax levies for the 2018-19 fiscal year for all political subdivisions in the county on Tuesday.

At $2.0948 per $100 of valuation, Tilden remains the highest, but it is less than one-half cent higher than last year.

Norfolk’s levy remains about in the middle at $1.9650, which is about the same as last year, when it was $1.9687.

One key reason why levies have been able to remain steady or decline is increasing property valuations — the other significant factor that factors into overall property tax bills.

Many ag land valuations decreased in Madison County, while many commercial and residential valuations increased. Overall, the county’s valuation increased about 3.3 percent and was certified at $4,069,576,107. It was $3.93 billion last year.

Norfolk’s city levy consists of the municipal levy (25.5 cents), airport authority (4.12 cents) and Norfolk sanitary district (.01 cents). Norfolk’s total municipal levy is 31.15 cents, which is up slightly.

Norfolk also has a downtown parking district that has levying authority. Property owners in the downtown pay an additional 35 cents per $100 of valuation.

School district property tax needs also play a big part of any property owner’s tax bill.

The school district levies in the county are as follows, with last year’s levy in parentheses:

Battle Creek — 80.45 cents (82.59 cents); Madison — 84.78 cents (86.88 cents); Meadow Grove — 80.37 cents (79.37 cents); Newman Grove — 46.10 cents (39.33 cents); Norfolk — $1.1766 ($1.188); Tilden — 80.37 cents (79.37 cents).

The miscellaneous levies, which Norfolk and other municipalities in the county also must pay, were also nearly unchanged. They are as follows:

ESU 8 — 1.30 cents; Lower Elkhorn NRD — 2.31 cents; Ag Society — 1.0 cents; Northeast Community College — 9.5 cents; and Railroad Transportation District — 0.008 cents.

Some areas also pay a rural fire district levy, which is 3.5 cents.

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