City council sets Tracy levy at 7%

Tracy resident David Schonhardt was one of only two members of the public to attend Monday evening’s Truth-in-Taxation meeting, but he carried a loud voice.

That’s because he was, simply said, unhappy about the proposed 7% tax levy that was approved later that night by the Tracy City Council.

“There have been two immense increases since,” he moved to Tracy two years ago. “Tax policy is the way that government communicates to the public, and the message coming loud and clear from this tax policy has been, we don’t want you to live here. And if you live here, we really don’t want you to improve your house, because we’re going to take a pound of flesh if you do.”

Schonhardt ultimately was looking for justification for the City’s second consecutive 7% tax hike, asking if it is the result of poor management by past councils that the City is trying to make up for, or because of decisions being made today.

While there was talk of a double-digit levy increase earlier this year, the council settled on 7% — the same increase set a year ago — and the budget presented by City Administrator Erik Hansen, which was also approved Monday, outlined the very reasons for another 7% hike, most notably the fact that the City is on the precipice of entering its largest debt load ever because of the Phase 3 project.

See more in this week’s paper!