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All property taxpayers pay same rate for district levy

October 15, 2007

Agricultural land is taxed on homestead and one acre, cabins exempt

By Kristen Miller
Staff Writer

The Dassel-Cokato School District will be asking voters to support a local levy providing students an additional $429.45 per year for the next seven years.

The passing of this operating levy will increase all property taxes at the same rate of .082 percent whether it be residential, commercial or agricultural. Seasonal recreational properties (cabins) are exempt from this levy.

The only difference is that agricultural land is taxed on the dwelling plus one acre, according to Michael Hoheisel of Northland Securities, Inc.

For example, a farm house with the market value of $100,000 and $3,000 an acre would be taxed on a total of $103,000 even if it has 160 acres, Hoheisel explained.

In regards to bonds, ag property is taxed on a different system in that the total homestead and acreage is taxed, according to Hoheisel.

Taxes on other agricultural land and buildings will not increase with the levy.

The yearly property tax increase for residential property with a $150,000 market value would be $123.03 a year, or $10.25 a month.

The Dassel-Cokato School District is providing a tax calculator on its web site (www.dc.k12.mn.us and click on 2007 Levy Information) for property owners to determine individual tax impacts.

The special election is Tuesday, Nov. 6 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and there are two voting locations. For school district residents in the City of Cokato, Albion, French Lake, Middleville, Stockholm, Victor, and Cokato townships, voting will take place at the Cokato City Hall.

School district residents in Collinwood, Darwin, Dassel, Ellsworth and Kingston townships will vote at the Dassel City Hall.

What will the $ go toward?

According to the DC School Board, if the levy is passed, the money will be used to:

• restore smaller and more manageable class sizes for k-12 which provides a quality learning environment.

• Offset bus fuel and heating costs.

• Enhance foreign language opportunities for high school students.

• Expand the science and math opportunities for high school students.

• Update hardware and software more frequently. The schools are currently on a 12-year replacement cycle.

• Update technology so that students are ready to compete in the 21st century workplace.

• Update media center book collections.

• Provide more technical college and college credit classes.

• Provide more support to students who struggle so that they can reach their highest potential.

• Restore opportunities for students in fine arts and athletics.

Community forum

Further information will be provided at a district-wide community forum Monday, Oct. 29 at 7 p.m. at Dassel Elementary School.