La Salle County boosts tax rate by about a penny

County mayors to each pay about $7 more than last year

La Salle County Governmental Complex

La Salle County’s tax rate will climb about a penny, meaning a small increase on the next round of tax bills on the county’s portion of the bill.

Monday, the La Salle County Board adopted a $30.6 million tax levy, about $1.4 million more than was brought in via property taxes last year. However, the county’s tax base grew by 3.7% and that means the rate will climb only a little to bring in the extra cash.

Based on the projected rate, each of the mayors of La Salle County will pay the county a few dollars more for the county’s portion of the tax bill when the Tax Man comes knocking next spring.

Peru Mayor Ken Kolowski paid the county $603 last year; this spring, the county will bill Kolowski a projected $610. Ottawa Mayor Dan Aussem’s line-item to the county would climb from $614 to about $622. In Streator, Mayor Jimmie Lansford’s increase comes to about $3 above the $328 he paid last year.

The projections are fluid, but board member Jerry Hicks (D-Marseilles) said he believes the county has done a good job holding taxes in check and “our rate last year dropped from the year before.”

After multiple votes — a discrepancy between the levy and budget was spotted, which led to a recess and amendatory voting — the levy was adopted 23-1. Board member Kindra Pottinger (R-Sheridan) voted no and then declined comment on her opposition.

Finally, board member Randy Freeman (R-Lostant) urged motorists to halt for stopped school buses with lights and arms activated. Freeman said he was approached by a constituent who reported at least one near-miss and got a dismissive response from law enforcement.

“I’d like to stop this before a child gets killed,” Freeman said.

In other matters, the board:

  • Extended the contract (base cost: $1.05 million) to provide healthcare and mental health services for inmates in the La Salle County Jail and the Detention Home.
  • Approved a one-year contract with Shaw Media ($29,810) to provide advertising for La Salle County Tourism
  • Will reconvene at 1 p.m. Monday, Dec. 13 at the La Salle County Governmental Complex, 707 E. Etna Road, Ottawa.