Loading

69°F

67°F

70°F

68°F

63°F

70°F

65°F

68°F

65°F

65°F

70°F

67°F
Search
NEWS STORIES

Rhinelander city administrator suggests city look for new ways to get moneySubmitted: 06/17/2014
Story By Lauren Stephenson


RHINELANDER - Rhinelander's City Administrator thinks the city relies too much on property taxes. Blaine Oborn presented his findings to the City Council last week.

Taxpayers in Rhinelander pay a little more than $750 in property taxes on average each year.

In Antigo, taxpayers pay a little more than half of that, while Merrill residents pay more than $500 on average in property taxes. Both of those cities have almost double the taxable residential property compared to Rhinelander.

"We're overly dependent on property tax and we have low to moderate income people. We have a high daytime population. Our commercial industrial even though we have a strong base here, is not contributing enough to really bring that down," Oborn said.

He says government spending isn't the issue. The City of Rhinelander's spending is $95 per capita compared to Antigo's $115 and Merrill's $119 per capita.

Oborn says Oneida County collects nearly $4 million in sales tax each year. He believes half of that revenue comes from Rhinelander. But the city doesn't get any of that money.

Rhinelander accounts for more than 30% of all trade area sales.

"When you talk about trade area, our trade area goes into Vilas County and up into Upper Michigan, and then Forest County and the counties to the west of us, too," he explained.

Oborn believes the city should look at retail to draw in more money.

About 7,800 people live in Rhinelander. But during the day, there are more than 14,000 people in the city.

"During the daytime, our police and our fire get busier. Our roads get used a lot and so that has an impact on the services that we have to provide," Oborn said.

He believes the city could bring in more money by increasing fees.

One option the city's considering is having the fire department charge people involved in crashes.

He also thinks the city should consider a premier resort tax. That's an extra half cent tax charged at tourism-related businesses.

Oborn thinks it could bring in between $300,000 and $800,000. The extra money would be used to improve infrastructure in the city.

"If you go to a hardware store, they wouldn't have to charge the extra tax. But if you went to a department store or a sporting goods store, that's considered more tourism-related, then they would have to collect the half cent in sales tax," Oborn explained.

The Department of Revenue decides which businesses must charge the tax. The state legislature would have to approve the tax for Rhinelander.

Then it would most likely go to a referendum.

Lake Delton, Wisconsin Dells, Bayfield and Eagle River have Premier Resort Taxes.

You can see a chart of the revenue from the premier resort tax at the link below.

Related Weblinks:
Premier Resort Tax Distributions

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

MERRILL - Merrill should get a new grandstand by next summer.

The Merrill Committee of the Whole voted on the project last week.

The project will cost $1,149,000.

The city will get insurance money from Lincoln County to pay for it.

+ Read More

Play Video

WISCONSIN - Hunters like to predict how the deer season will go this time of year. But the DNR is focused on working with land owners to create better habitat for deer. That could mean a more successful hunt in a few years.

It's working with public and private land owners through the Deer Management Assistance Program. The 2012 Deer Trustees report led to the creation of the program.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Three racers from the Hodag BMX Club took first place in their Division at the State Championships in Oshkosh this weekend.

No one in the club placed lower the fourth.

Coach Robbie Deede said the Hodag BMX program continues to grow better and stronger each year.
He was proud of everyone who competed this year.

+ Read More

NORTHWOODS - Around this time, people start noticing webbed nests on tree branches in their yards and woods. Fall webworm activity peaks in August. The insects are native to northern Wisconsin and live on hardwoods. Caterpillars form nests and feed on the leaves inside the nest.

"They do make a very messy web nest and people would be seeing that at this time of year," DNR forest health specialist Linda Williams. "The web nests that we see in trees in the fall will be out at the ends of branches."

+ Read More

ONEIDA COUNTY - The Oneida County Humane Society needs a lot of money to take care of all the animals in its care.

The shelter relies on fundraisers to help raise that money.

One of the shelter's biggest fundraiser is its Jog for the Dogs event. The run is scheduled for Saturday September 12th this year.

+ Read More

Play Video

EAGLE RIVER - The first-ever ATV & UTV Side by Side World Championship Derby finished up Sunday afternoon. 

Races started on Saturday and continued through the weekend. 

Spectators, racers and event staff all say they were pleased with how the event turned out.

+ Read More

GREEN BAY - Children across Wisconsin will be back in school soon.

People driving are asked to watch out for kids boarding or exiting school buses.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here