Nashua mayor defends city’s nest egg
According to Lozeau, the city’s assessed property values totaled about $9.5 billion when she took over as mayor in 2008. Now, the city is predicting those numbers are closer to $8 billion, Lozeau told the aldermanic Budget Review Committee this week.
“We are seeing signs that our community is stronger,” she said. The majority of the unexpected revenue consisted of an additional $1 million from motor-vehicle registrations and an additional $200,000 in planning and building revenue, mostly from extra building inspections, said Lozeau.
With this being a city-wide revaluation year, Lozeau expects that 58 percent of residential property owners in Nashua will owe the same amount or less on their upcoming tax bill compared to last year.
Alderman-at-Large David Deane said he was pleased that Nashua has nearly 12 percent of its operating budgeting sitting aside in an undesignated fund balance.
At least one alderman disagreed.
Alderman-at-Large James Donchess said the city is holding more money than necessary. If the undesignated fund balance stayed closer to 10 percent rather than the proposed 12 percent, it could save taxpayers an additional $4.4 million, which would result in a savings of about $140 for an average property tax bill hovering around $6,000.
“I just don’t think that is responsible,” Lozeau said. While most city officials would like to save the taxpayers money, she said now is not the appropriate time. “I think we should be very careful.”
Using $4.3 million to offset the tax rate is a consistent and comfortable number, Griffin said.
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