Green Bay mayor breaks tie to pass city budget with $7.58 per $1,000 tax levy

The city council rejected the original budget. Even with a lower mill rate taxes are going up because of property reassessments.
Published: Nov. 16, 2022 at 7:23 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 16, 2022 at 6:51 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - People living in Green Bay can expect to receive their new property tax bills in the mail in the next few weeks. The newly-approved 2023 Green Bay city budget passed Tuesday night -- but just barely.

The budget divided council members. The mayor’s original budget proposal was rejected by the council by a 7-4 vote on Nov. 10. It took cutting $1.8 million from tax increases to receive a split, 6-6 vote. Mayor Eric Genrich broke the tie. CLICK HERE to watch the full meeting.

“I think it’s pretty darn important to fund all of our critical services in the city. It’s a core responsibility that I have, and it’s a core responsibility for our council as well, so I vote in favor,” Genrich said.

District 8 alderman Chris Wery voted against the budget.

“We were given a horrible ghastly budget, and we trimmed it down to a bad budget, probably very bad budget,” Wery said. “There’s probably a lot in here we could pursue, but looking at the lay of the land, there’s a lot of tie votes here that will fail. I’m going to vote against this because I think there’s room to approve.”

The budget passed with a tax levy of $7.58 per $1,000 on property for Green Bay residents, down from the mayor’s original proposal of $7.84/$1,000.

The current rate is $9.80/$1,000.

Although the digits are less, the city is raising taxes more than $6 million due to the recent bump in property values in the city’s reassessments. That’s what concerns Council President Jesse Brunette, and he worries residents’ property value could go up even more next year.

”I think that a lot of taxpayers in Green Bay are going to have a lot of sticker shock in December when they receive their tax bills, because if a person’s property is reassessed at 50%, 60%, 75% more than it was the last budget, then their taxes are going to go up dramatically,” Brunette said.

He says the city’s reassessment does not consider inflation, so even if the mill rate is less, it could mean families will struggle when they receive their tax bills next month.

Alder Bill Galvin, who represents District 4, voted yes, saying there needed to be a compromise.

“I know for some people money is not easy like it is for others, and I sympathize with that,” he said. “I think that overall it’s going to benefit the community -- the entire community -- more than it’s going to hurt.”

Fire, police and public works departments were the agencies receiving the most money in the original budget proposal. Brunette says all three were untouched in the revised budget that passed.