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Common Council divided on budget issues

Oct. 26, 2011

The battle lines were uncharacteristically drawn last night on the Muskego Common Council, which narrowly passed a 2012 city budget and a $14.5 million capital borrowing plan.

Approvals came on the same 4-3 vote that held unchanged through six failed attempted amendments to the budget, the borrowing and the capital budget.

Among other things, the voting block of three - Kert Harenda, Dan Soltysiak and Neil Borgman - didn't think controls will be strong enough on the $14.5 million borrowing package. They also didn't want the $2.5 million Pioneer Drive reconstruction and beautification next year, and preferred a pay freeze for city workers instead of the 2 percent raises budgeted.

The three had brought up most of their concerns during the prior weeks of budget discussions, but the four aldermen in the majority - Noah Fiedler, Neome Schaumberg, Keith Werner and Tracy Snead - still weren't buying their viewpoints this week.

The 2012 budget calls for no property tax increase. The operating budget will be $14 million, up 1.7 percent from this year's nearly $13.8 million budget. The levy will remain at $11,935,917 with the estimated tax rate dipping slightly to $4.41 per $1,000 of assessed value from $4.43 per $1,000.

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