Tax Increases Proposed on March 10 Ballot

Westland voters will have the option to choose Yes or No on two tax proposals in the upcoming election. The Detroit Institute of Arts is asking for 0.2 mills of additional funds for general operations. In Westland, a 1 mill sanitation millage is being proposed to maintain current trash hauling services. 1 mill is equal to $1 per $1,000 of taxable home value. If both are approved, tax bills would go up by about $100 per year for a home with $150,000 market value.

Sanitation Millage

This is what the current sanitation budget looks like without the additional millage. Costs for recycling are no longer a part of the budget since the program was put on hold early last year. Expenditures exceed revenues in the current year and the gap is expected to grow annually. A town hall meeting has been scheduled for 6pm February 11th at Westland City Hall.

The Sanitation budget covers the City’s fleet of garbage trucks and garbage pick-up services that include bulk pick-up, composting and yard waste removal. Here is the language for the millage exactly as it appears on the ballot:

Shall the City of Westland levy a new millage of up to 1 mill against all taxable property for a 10-year period, beginning with tax year 2020 and ending with tax year 2029, inclusive, for the purpose of funding recycling and garbage services, including, but not limited to, recycling, bulk pickup/disposal, yard waste collection, composting and, trash pickup/disposal? 1 mill is equal to $1.00 per $1,000 of taxable value, and which rate shall be assessed without further reduction by Section 31 of Article IX, State Constitution of 1963, and without further annual vote by the electorate. If approved, the full millage will raise approximately $1,750,000 the first year it is levied.

DIA Millage Proposal

Two years ahead of when it was set to expire, the DIA is asking for additional funds to maintain current levels of operations. The DIA is free for residents in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb Counties. Voters in the three counties passed a 10-year millage in 2012, which added around $23 million a year in funding to the museum. The 2012 proposal was passed easily in Oakland and Wayne counties, but narrowly in Macomb. The renewal rate of 0.2 mills will continue to cost just about $15 a year for a home worth $150,000.

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