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Peoria County Plans to Keep Property Tax Rates

PEORIA - Peoria County is releasing plans for the 2014 budget, and it could mean small savings for homeowners.
PEORIA - Peoria County is releasing plans for the 2014 budget, and it could mean small savings for homeowners.  
Thursday, Peoria County Administrator Lori Curtis Luther presented to the board goals for the upcoming budget. The recommended budget is nearly $600,000 more than in 2013 and is balanced. However, the balance is largely made possible by personnel cuts. 18 full time employees were laid off since the approval of 2013 budget.
Some county board members questioned if there are other ways to reach a balanced budget. However, with 63 percent of the county's finances devoted to staff, Luther says there are not many other options.
“When you are put into a position where one of the overall objectives of the county board is to keep out property tax rate flat, we have to make accommodations, particularly when those dollars are declining."
The county is receiving less money from motor fuel taxes and property taxes. That means the county is receiving “hundreds of thousands of dollars” less than previous years, according to Luther.
Also, the budget plans to keep property tax rates the same as 2013. With property values across the county declining, homeowners will pay slightly less.
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