The Town of Waterloo’s 2020 budget is very similar to last year’s, with only a few significant changes.
The town board unanimously approved the $473,579.59 budget on Dec. 2, featuring a mill rate of $2.75 per $1,000 of assessed value. This is only a 1-cent increase from last year, though the total tax levy will rise by $3,448 to $236,248.
The new budget would have been less than the current $458,032.27 budget if it were not for a $30,000 increase in snow plowing expenditures — the 2020 budget sets aside a total of $95,000 for plowing.
The 2019 budget had prepared for $65,000 in plowing expenditures, but after heavy snowfall this year cost the town $89,454.94, town officials decided to budget for another busy plowing season.
“I would think that it would be safe to do that,” Supervisor Larry Holzhueter said. “I’d rather be on that end than go back to ($65,000). We can always use that money for something else.”
With more people renting town hall than expected this year, budgeted general building expenditures have almost doubled to $9,000. Capital outlay expenses, however, have decreased from $6,000 to $3,000, now that the town has completed the construction of a municipal shed.
Even with the rise in overall expenditures, budgeted revenues have increased to match, with no deficit in the 2020 budget. Along with the larger tax levy, the town is anticipating $102,912.48 in state transportation aid, an increase by almost $10,000 from last year.
The budgeted aid does not factor in a potential Department of Transportation multimodal local supplement grant, which would provide up to 90 percent of the cost of a single road improvement project, while the town would pay for the remaining 10 percent.
With the grant’s Dec. 6 application deadline looming, the board unanimously selected Newville Road for the project, given that it is one of the longest and most traveled roads within the town.
Chairman Scott Hassett said the town would be willing to accept as low as an 80 percent match from the state, but nothing less than that amount.
Waukesha-based Payne and Dolan Inc. estimated the costs of improving Newville Road at $655,420. This would include milling, draining and paving the road with DOT-grade commercial asphalt.
The town would not begin the project next year, but would take a few years to set aside the necessary funding.