Lebanon City Council considers reversing course on 3% tax hike

Published: Jun. 5, 2020 at 6:00 PM EDT
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Lebanon, New Hampshire, residents are facing a 3% tax increase as the city works to balance its books, but a least one city councilor says she won't be voting for it.

Over the past 20 years, the city has been making upgrades to water and sewer infrastructure to the tune of more than $70 million. The bills are now coming due. A 3% tax increase over the next several years was agreed to before the pandemic, but now some city officials say the plan needs to be reconsidered, even if it means higher tax increases down the road.

"We have never seen the kind of hits we are seeing to the restaurant service and retail industries. We have never seen in the last 20 years double-digit unemployment in the city of Lebanon. This is a completely new world that we are operating in and I think it really makes sense for the City Council to be looking at that," said City Councilor Karen Liot Hill.

She knows firsthand what the economic downturn has done to local businesses. Her family operated the Lebanon Diner for the past eight years. She says it will not be reopening.

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