The Legislature created the Council on Local Results and Innovation (CLRI) in 2010 and in February 2011 the CLRI created ten performance measures for counties and cities that are meant to measure resident opinions of service delivery and determining the actual effectiveness of those services. Participating counties and cities are offered financial incentives of $.14 per capita in LGA (up to $25,000) and elimination of any levy limits which may be in effect for a particular year.
Only a handful of South Metro cities as well as Dakota County itself chose to participate:
Based on what was submitted by Apple Valley, who chose to provide almost no information aside from a half-sheet of metrics which they apparently felt met the reporting requirements, it apparently does not take much to get up to $25,000 in government aid back nor get levy limits raised for a city.
Levy limits are meant to provide property tax relief for citizens. While some have argued the limits themselves push cities to levy the maximum amount, with the changes at the state level, counties and cities are opting to raise taxes more to cover their loss in aid rather than make cuts.
Citizens are continuing to suffer a relentless assault on their home values and the inevitable brilliance of city councils who see this as an opportunity to effectively raise taxes without affecting the dollars coming out of the citizens’ pockets. However, if property values fall by 50%, so should the tax rate paid. We all must share in the suffering of our current economic situation and this means service level cuts, staff job losses, etc. It’s incredibly disturbing that the State has created an office which allows cities to provide almost no useful or relevant requested information to gain acceptance into a program which eliminates levy limits meant to protect the public.
Should cities and counties be provided an apparently easy way to get more aid from the state and eliminate limits imposed to help reduce the tax burden on citizens? Looking at the data provided by the participating local cities and the expectations of the program, do you think Apple Valley should receive credit for their work or do you think more should have to be provided as a minimum? Knowing what other cities collect on a regular basis and what the cities here provided, are you surprised your local city (Farmington, Hastings, Lakeville, Rosemount) weren’t accepted/didn’t participate?