- Associated Press - Saturday, June 3, 2017

MINOT, N.D. (AP) - Dwindling revenue sources in Minot will mean tough decisions about city spending in the future.

The city recently held workshops to discuss topics including declining mill levy, which dropped from 122 mills in 2007 to nearly 78 in 2016, the Minot Daily News (https://bit.ly/2rAqzRS ) reports. The decrease could’ve been due to Minot’s increased valuation. Higher property values and appropriated acres contributed to the city’s valuation.

In 2016, Minot appropriated 17,753 acres, which was up 85 percent from the 9,600 acres appropriated in 2007.

In some cases, the city on the edge of the oil patch built out infrastructure to annexed acres only to see a stall in the development that generates tax revenue. Sales tax income also is declining back to pre-oil boom levels.

“That’s one of our problems with our revenue stream right now,” City Manager Tom Barry said. “That’s something we will be struggling with over the next few years until those undeveloped areas fill in.”

Sue Greenheck, city comptroller, said more than 1 percent of the city’s 2 percent sales tax goes either to property tax relief or to projects that would otherwise be paid for using property tax.

“We have been shifting the property tax burden onto the sales tax revenue,” Barry said. “There’s nothing wrong with doing that as long as the sales tax revenues are there.”

Barry said the Minot should be concerned for financing fixed costs with variable revenue.

“That’s very, very dangerous,” he said.

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Information from: Minot Daily News, https://www.minotdailynews.com

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