By Carlee Edwards
A public hearing was held in Greenwood on Tuesday night, September 9. The hearing was to receive public input on the proposed 2014 property tax levies for the city of Greenwood, Missouri.
"State law requires that the city conduct a public hearing prior to the setting of the property tax levies," City Attorney Paul Campo said.
Before taking any comments or questions from the public, Campo further explained how the property tax levies are calculated. He also explained how the taxes are divided up and what percentages go where. The total tax rate for Greenwood was calculated to be 1.59 percent, which is the same as last year.
Of this total tax rate, .4537 percent goes to the general fund as usual, .6158 percent goes to the fire ambulance fund, .0197 percent goes to the fire hydrant inspection fund, and .5027 goes to the general obligation fund, which is just half a percent higher than last year.
“We’re talking about one of the nation’s most sensitive subjects: taxes,” Mayor Marvin Megee said, explaining why it was important to have a public hearing.
The change in the tax levies was so small that no citizens had any comments or questions to follow Campo’s detailed explanation. The public hearing was closed and the board of aldermen meeting was opened. The ordinance establishing the tax levies was voted on unanimously and passed without any discussion.
The board also authorized the transfer of certain Greenwood certificates of deposit from two separate banks, Hawthorne Bank and Industrial Bank, into one Commerce Bank certificate.
Megee suggested rolling the funds into an Allied Bank, but the board settled on moving the general and transportation funds, totaling around $460,000, to Commerce Bank with a 1 percent interest rate on the general fund and a .95 percent interest rate on the transportation fund for a 24-month term.
“I have all the confidence in the world that the city won’t need this money any time soon,” Megee said.
The last resolution passed during the meeting concerned the serving of alcohol in the park for the Fall Festival, to be held on October 11, 2014. The plan laid out for the board requires that all alcohol has to stay within a designated “beer garden” instead of being allowed throughout the whole park. The alcohol will be served there, and tables will be set up and a band will be playing for the amount of time that the alcohol is served.
Alderman Levi Weaver presented his concerns to the chief about security and confinement of the alcohol to the restricted area. Chief Hallgrimson echoed Weaver’s concerns, saying that security concerns and whether an officer or two will need to be present, as well as how they will be paid, are questions that will need to be decided before hand.
It was decided that the park board shouldn’t act as police and that an officer or two will need to be present to help monitor the drinks and help keep a clear separation between the family-friendly event and the adult event. The payment for these officers will come from the park board fund.