Highland Haven keeps its property taxes low; fire protection costs rise



By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

The Highland Haven board of aldermen voted Tuesday, Sept. 16, to keep its property taxes at $.1125 per $100 property valuation, a city official said Thursday.

“We have low taxes because we keep our expenses low,” said Mayor Irene Dauphin. She explained the city’s biggest expenses are for emergency services and fire protection. “We actually run the city on about $70,000, including around $30,000 budgeted for roads,” she said. Dauphin added that the city does not use the entire amount budgeted for road improvements and maintenance.

Residents will be paying $1.50 more per $100,000 than last year. Property values have risen and more properties have been added to the tax roll.

Granite Shoals Fire Rescue will get more than $68,000 from the city in fiscal year 2015, which is up from around $66,000 last year. The cost of fire protection has risen from $10,000 in 2010 to an expected $70,000 for fiscal year 2016, she said.

One of the reasons for this increase is the department’s transition from being volunteer-based to a full-time organization with increased investment in equipment, personnel and maintenance costs. The department has 30 firefighters and the ability to respond to emergencies 24/7. 

For the full story, see Friday's Highlander

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