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City considers welcoming free tax preparation site

Staff writer

Hillsboro City Council might sponsor a site where area residents can prepare their income tax returns for free.

Mayor Delores Dalke heard about the idea while she attended a National League of Cities meeting, she told the council Tuesday.

The purpose would be twofold, she said. It provides a public service, and it can bring more money into the city if taxpayers find tax credits they otherwise wouldn’t receive.

The program has an income cap on who can use the service, and users prepare their tax returns on a computer with assistance from volunteers, Dalke said.

Councilman Bob Watson said he was concerned that the service might compete with local tax preparation services. That issue was brought up at the NLC meeting, but low-income families seldom use tax preparers anyway, Dalke said.

The council took no action regarding the possibility.

In other business:

  • The city will renew La Cabana’s liquor license, on condition that the restaurant receives its state permit. A mail mix-up caused the problem, City Administrator Larry Paine said.
  • The council met in closed session with Paine to discuss land acquisition for 10 minutes. No action was taken on return to open session.
  • A public hearing will be Dec. 15 to amend the 2009 budget for five funds: equipment reserve, capital improvements, sewer pond project, meter deposit reserve, and D.A.R.E. The amendments are necessary to prevent budget violations, Paine said.
  • The council met in closed session with Paine to discuss personnel matters for 10 minutes. No action was taken on return to open session.
  • Equipment will be purchased to rehabilitate five sewer lift stations at a cost of $212,637. All new equipment will be installed at the pump stations. Installation will cost an additional $31,000 per station. The old equipment will be sold for scrap.
  • The cost of a one-year skid loader lease for 2010 decreased to $3,900 from the 2009 cost of $4,650. The council voted to lease a new skid loader for one year from White Star Machinery and Supply, of Wichita.
  • Engineering work for grading at Hillsboro Business Park will be done. Paine said doing the work would make the area more enticing for businesses.
  • Paine observed installation of cured-in-place pipe in Lehigh. Hillsboro plans to purchase about 18,000 feet of the pipe to mitigate problems in the city sewers.

The next regularly scheduled meeting will be 4 p.m. Dec. 1.

Last modified Nov. 18, 2009

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