Village eyes millage hike to fix roads

By David Fleet
Editor
Goodrich-On Monday night the village council voted 4-1 to set a public hearing to consider a new proposed millage rate of 6 mills. Council member Doug McAbee voted no.
The public hearing will be at 6 p.m., June 24, at the village offices, 7338 S. State Road.
Village council members say the need for a millage rate increase is to fix aging village infrastructure.
The village council is considering four options regarding the millage: To leave the tax as is which will roll back to the basic tax rate of 5.0872 mills adding $8,000 to the general fund. If the rate stays at the current 5.3251 mills about $24,247 will be added to the general fund; If the rate is increased to 6 mills about $69,193 will be added to the general fund. If the maximum rate allowable 6.919 mills is approved $130,394 will be added to the general fund.

“Whatever you chose, that (amount) all could be earmarked for road improvements,” said Sherri Wilkerson, village administrator/clerk. “Roads have been the common concern.”
The average property value in the village is $127,000, with a taxable value of $63,500. With no change in the millage (5.0872), the property tax would decrease by $15.11; if the millage is at the same (5.3251) taxes will stay the same; at 6 mills taxes increase to $42.86 and at 6.919 mills, taxes it jumps to $101.21 annual.
“At that public hearing we’ll discuss the millage rate,” said Shannon McCafferty, village council president. “I hear the concerns, but we have failing infrastructure (in the village). The (village) budget is already tight, we are operating at a minimum. (Fixing roads) it’s the biggest complaint I hear from people.”
At a millage rate of 5.3251, the village ranks third from the bottom of 27 home rule communities in Michigan that replied. The millages ranged from 13.2984 to 1 mill.
“I don’t like tax increases,” she said. “But I don’t like failing infrastructure.”
Council member Tim Barraco supports the millage hike.
“There has not been an change in taxes in this village in 15 years,” said Barraco. “The goods and maintenance has gone up. You might think it’s a huge raise but it’s not. It sounds bad when you say tax increase, but remember 15 years has gone by. We have to find the money somewhere.”
“I understand the fixed income situation. (But) we have a growing community,” said Barraco. “This community is not stagnant, it’s growing expeditiously. If you look around and see how (many) kids are in this community, there’s ton. The school is growing. I’m here long term I don’t want to just maintain the badness. I want good roads.”