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Council Weighs Budget Solutions

At the latest city council meeting, the group continued discussion on how to solve the city’s escalating debt and budget shortfall.

Two ordinances came before the council for a first reading.

One would increase the refuse fee to help balance the budget. Council was unsure whether an increase of about ten dollars should be seen on a utility bill paid per household or as part of one’s property taxes.

The other ordinance would establish a half percent home rule sales tax in Naperville, which would tack on an additional tax on goods purchased in town.

Some council members were comfortable with the plan, but others, like Councilman Coyne, suggested a lower number.

“Most importantly we would learn how much a home rule sales tax collects, it would be at .25 before we do something bigger, it would be a nice look at what kind of money is originated by the tax,” said Councilman Kevin Coyne.

As the DuPage Water Commission currently has a .25 percent tax of their own in place, set to expire on July 1, 2016, Coyne proposed that the new sales tax not be implemented until that date, to make the transition a bit more painless. He also wants to add on a sunset provision that would expire in 2020- a bad idea according to Mayor Chirico.

“If we don’t take action to start reducing that debt, we will increase debt naturally because of interest rate increases. We’ll be essentially paying off less expensive bonds and re-bonding more expensive bonds as we need more money for infrastructure,” said Mayor of Naperville, Steve Chirico.

Final votes are expected to take place on both matters at their next meeting on September 15th.

Alyssa Bochenek Reports.


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