Truth-in-taxation hearing Dec. 4

Sean McGowan

Better ambulance service for the village will likely mean a combined property tax increase of 172.7 percent for the Metamora Volunteer Fire Department and the Village of Metamora.

Village attorney Mike Tibbs estimated that the average homeowner will pay approximately $75 in added taxes for the ambulance services. He also said the number would go up or down depending on the value of a resident's house.

Metamora's corporate and special purpose property taxes extended or abated for 2011 were $572,897.43, according to the notice of proposed property tax increase for the village. The notice stated that proposed corporate and special purpose property taxes to be levied for 2012 are $707,116.89.

The notice of proposed property tax increase for the Metamora Rural Fire Protection District stated that the corporate and special purpose property taxes extended or abated for the year 2011 were $65,350.15. According to the notice, the proposed corporate and special purpose property taxes to be levied for 2012 are $162,887.68.

A truth-in-taxation hearing will occur Dec. 4 at 7 p.m for a tax levy agreement between the Metamora village board, E-116 Ambulance Service and Metamora's volunteer firemen.

Both E-116 and the fire department will attend. The meeting is open to the public.

"It appears all matters related to E-116 will be concluded then," village attorney Mike Tibbs said.

The village board is in agreement with E-116 and the fire department to raise the tax levy for ambulance and fire protection services.

Tibbs wrote the notices for these agreements to verify how much property taxes would increase for the village and the fire department. The notices can be found on page B18 of the Nov. 28 issue of the print edition of the Woodford Times.

"The agreement is more in its final form," Tibbs said.

The levy will stay the same for the next two years. In these two years, the levy agreement allows for any of the three parties to opt for an audit if deemed necessary.

Village President John Heinze said this is the first time that all three parties have partnered for the purpose of levying taxes to pay for services.

"The reason for the two year thing is everything's new and we need to gain some stability and go from there," Heinze said.

During the Nov. 6 board meeting, E-116 employees, as well as employees of the rural fire district, came to hear the circumstances of the agreements between them and the board. They unanimously agreed on the contracts written by Tibbs.

A referendum went out and residents voted 584-186 in favor of the levy March 13.

For more information on the Metamora Volunteer Firefighter Department, call 367-2640. Call 367-2786 to reach Emergency 116 Ambulance Service.