Western Montana News

Feb 12, 2014 9:23 PM by Dax VanFossen - KAJ News

Lincoln County dealing with $2.1M shortfall

Lincoln County, Montana is in the hole, by roughly $2.1 million. That figure is a result of accidental, but additional taxes to Lincoln County residents. According to Lincoln County Commissioner Tony Berget, the problem was twofold, one with the Troy Dispatch Levy and another with Troy Parks.

"We started to really look and in finding that we found, that that mill levy floated but also this other error happened. So there are really two issues, the floating mills and the voted levy which is going to have to be addressed at the state level," said Berget.

Berget says all is not lost, Lincoln County does have some reserves, but an issue like this is clearly a disappointment to an already economically down area, "It’s a problem; it's going to be very difficult for us. I don't think that we're going to have to make any drastic changes, but it just emphasizes once again you know, we've had some economic woes, and problems and this is not making it any better."

Berget doesn't feel like major cuts will have to be made to current staff members, but some programs may suffer as the money had already been budgeted. But Berget says, though it will be hard, taxpayers will get their money back, "Property owners change within a year, and it's over a three year period, and it just makes it really complicated, but that's our preference, but we'll try to go through it and figure it out."

Lincoln County will most likely lower all of their mill levies for the next couple of years to make up for the disparity in tax dollars.

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