• Charlene Sims, Journal staff

County to send out 20,000 letters because budgets exceeded revenue neutral

Updated: Aug 10

MOUND CITY – County Clerk David Lamb told the Linn County Commissioners on Monday, August 1, that the county will be sending out letters to more than 20,000 taxpayers to inform them that a government entity in their area, either city, library, school, township or extension district had raised their budget above revenue neutral.

Lamb said that even though the county had not raised its budget above revenue neutral, the county was obligated to send out the letters for any entity in the county that was raising their budget above revenue neutral. However, because the Marais des Cygnes Extension district covers the whole county and it raised its budget very slightly but above revenue neutral, letters will be sent to every taxpayer who owns property in Linn County. That includes those who own property but don't reside in the county.

Lamb reported that the cost of sending the letters this year was covered by the state and it was also supposed to be next year. So far, though, the state Legislature has not approved that cost for their 2023 budget.

The cost to the county this year to send the notices out will be in the $20,000 range. The envelope cost this year is $1,200 and the postage $16,000 to $17,000. Paper costs will be about $400 if the can get it in time. Their regular supplier, Quill Office Supplies, has told them the paper would not be available until after the deadline for sending out the letters.

Lamb said that he had ordered four cases of paper from Staples and hopefully it will be delivered tomorrow. Printing the letters also costs the county in printer cartridge costs of $300 to $400. Labor for folding and stuffing the envelopes is not covered by the state.

Lamb explained to the commissioners that if the revenue neutral law stays in effect the way it is now, the county would have to bill each entity separately that raised their budget above revenue neutral for the mailing costs.

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