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Lancaster Council sets final levy, COLA increases

By Anna Jauhola
The Lancaster City Council approved its 2023 budget and cost of living increases for employees during its final meeting of the year on Wednesday, Dec. 14.
In November, the council discussed three options for the 2023 payroll rates – 2 percent plus one step, 3 percent plus one step or 4 to 5.5 percent through monetary hourly increases, plus one step.
The council felt the 3 percent, which amounts to a $7,600 increase for the year, was the most reasonable. So all employees will receive a 3 percent cost of living adjustment and those eligible will move up one step on the payscale. This will be effective Sunday, Jan. 1.
In September, the council set a preliminary tax levy of $115,000 — $5,000 over the 2021 levy. At that meeting, City Clerk Carol Johnson proposed two budgets; one that included a major sewer project and one without that project. At the November meeting, the council agreed the sewer project could be put on hold as they found the sewer condition was better than expected.
With that, the council approved its tax levy at $115,000 for 2023. Regardless of this increase, the city is still using $18,976 in reserves to balance its budget for the year.

Read the full story in the Dec. 21, 2022, edition of the Kittson County Enterprise. 

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