Government Briefs

Print Article

Covering costs

The Libby Budget Committee met to look over their annual budget report, discussing ways to make better use of money and save funds, Tuesday in Libby.

Peggy Williams, committee member and city council member, said on the sewer side of things, regarding the revenue versus expenses, “we are actually going into the hole about $2,000 a month.”

The City of Libby currently uses a three month average taken from October, November and December to set the rates for sewer billing.

Williams said both her and the Libby city administrator, Jim Hammons, tried to figure out what the cities water/sewer rates should be, with help from the Rural Development program. They have a formula “they kind of consider the Gospel of water/sewer rates” for communities to use, she said.

But, after looking at the city’s budget, using a formula to raise water rates and reduce sewer rates “just doesn’t seem to work for us,” she said.

Hammons said a big problem is how or the way the city bills people. Libby is the only town that bills people using a three month average, he said.

If there is an elderly person or a single person who hardly uses any water, they are not going to do anything but pay the base rate for sewer all year long, he said.

The sewer rates ideally should be a usage-based charge, he said. Figuring out a way to change this is the plan.

Council member Kristin Smith touched on Libby’s water/sewer rate situation, adding that “being an anomaly is causing us problems.”

Extra funds

Libby City Council members discussed ways to help secure funds by creating tax incremental financial districts in Libby during a Budget Committee meeting, Tuesday in Libby.

Council member Gary Beach explained that TIFDs essentially designate tax revenue to be used specifically for improvements. If the city wanted to, for example, improve curbs and sidewalks they could use a TIFD special fund to do that, he said.

Council Member Kirstin Smith added that TIFDs are a great tool. They help tax money not “get lost” in the general fund.

If a district needs assistance or special interests, TIFDs are a way to help direct funds, said Beach. The districts could be made basically anywhere in Libby.

Council Member Peggy Williams “we really need to start thinking seriously about” creating these.

Print Article

Read More Local News

Sheriff’s Office blotter

February 21, 2020 at 9:14 am | Daily Inter Lake The law roundup is compiled from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office incident log. It is not meant to serve as an exhaustive account. Feb. 9 12:48 a.m. Fish and game A caller told authorities ...

Comments

Read More

City council rejects license for ceramics shop

February 21, 2020 at 9:20 am | Western News Libby City Council voted unanimously Feb. 18 to deny a business license to a ceramics shop located on Washington Avenue in what officials described as a rare move. 406 Education Ceramics advertise...

Comments

Read More

Aquatics center backers now favor $12.6 million facility

February 21, 2020 at 9:16 am | Western News Supporters of an aquatics center in Libby will ask voters to approve a mill levy adding about $30 to the bill of a taxpayer with a home valued at $200,000 to fund the facility. Tony Petrusha, a mem...

Comments

Read More

CWD found in 142 animals tested by state in 2019

February 18, 2020 at 9:24 am | Western News The 2019 sampling for chronic wasting disease began April 1 and ceased near the end of January. Among other results the testing yielded Montana’s first detection of the disease in moose and elk. The...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 293-4124
311 California Ave.
Libby, MT 59923

©2020 The Western News Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X