BERLIN – Elected officials agreed to cut a proposed property tax increase to 18% following weeks of public outcry.
In a budget work session Monday, members of the Berlin Town Council agreed conceptually to an 18% increase — which would make the rate 80 cents per $100 of assessed land value — in the next fiscal year starting July 1 to be followed by a to-be-determined increase for next fiscal year. They council also agreed to raise water rates 5% and sewer rates 25% to ensure the enterprise funds don’t need to borrow from the general fund.
“Let it be known the Town of Berlin is not considering a 30% tax increase for the coming year,” Councilman Dean Burrell said.
At a well-attended special work session Monday, officials quickly agreed to rate increases of 5% and 25% for water and sewer. Though they initially discussed a sewer increase spread over five years, staff said Monday the immediate increase would eliminate any shortfalls in the fund and would provide the town with time to study rates further going forward.