FOREST CITY | The estimated Winnebago County budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 calls for a total general levy increase of $1.14 per $1,000 taxable valuation.
The proposed total rural levy would increase by almost 90 cents from the current fiscal year.
The public hearing on the budget is set for 10 a.m. on Tuesday, March 6, in the board of supervisors room at the Winnebago County Courthouse.
The estimated budget calls for a total general levy of $8.24 and a total rural levy of $13.51.
The estimated general basic levy is $4.04, an increase of 27 cents from the current fiscal year. The estimated rural basic levy is $4.47, a decrease of 37 cents.
The general basic and rural basic levies for the upcoming fiscal year will be higher than the state-established maximum rates, which are $3.50 for general basic and $3.95 for rural basic.
Counties are allowed by exceed those limits if funds are needed to continue a program that provides substantial benefit to residents or if there's a reduced or unusually low growth rate in the property tax base.
The budget states the difference between the general basic tax rate and the maximum tax rate normally allowed is due to tuck-pointing and brick replacement at the courthouse and staffing at the new public safety center.
The reasons given for exceeding the maximum for the rural basic levy are continuance of the bridge replacement program and maintenance of the county's infrastructure.