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Local

Lakemoor raises its levy ‘just a hair’

LAKEMOOR – When the village of Lakemoor crossed the 5,000 mark in population, the countdown started to meet a set of state-mandated restrictions.

One of those includes contributing to the downstate police pension fund, Lakemoor Village President Todd Weihofen said.

Police officers previously could contribute to a retirement plan and the village contributed a small percentage, but now Lakemoor has a police pension board and has to follow the state statute that lays out how much the village will contribute.

The Lakemoor Village Board did not levy for the pension last year, and in the levy approved at its meeting Thursday, it again did not levy for it. The village’s contribution will be paid out of the general fund.

The village is trying not to raise anyone’s taxes, Weihofen said.

The levy, which is for just less than $560,000, did go up, he said, but by “just a hair.”

The sentiment not to raise taxes has been echoed by other taxing bodies in the area.

The McHenry County Board and the Spring Grove Village Board are set to vote on level levies this month.

They’ll dip into reserves to cover any shortfall – something to which Richmond Village Trustee Dennis Bardy doesn’t think is very smart.

He and the other members of the Richmond Village Board voted at the Nov. 1 meeting to raise their levy by 4.81 percent, just under the 5 percent cap. It translates to a 1.26 percent increase in the tax rate.

“It’s like when you go to wherever you do your grocery shopping, everything keeps on going up as it does for the village,” Trustee Craig Kunz said at the meeting. “The cost just for public works, the building materials and fuel keeps going up.”

With 5,000 population, the village of Lakemoor also has to elect rather than appoint its village clerk.

The position will come up for election in April, so the board has been working on village code that addresses the position, outlining expectations,guidelines and compensation, Weihofen said. The board currently is looking at a stipend of $2,800 to $3,800 a year.

The revised ordinance likely will be voted on at the board’s next meeting Dec. 13.

Because the clerk currently is an appointed, paid position, the board also is considering creating an appointed comptroller’s position for day-to-day operations, Weihofen said.

The board likely will appoint someone who already is employed by the village and just add the new responsibilities, he said.

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