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More than one-third of Billings public-safety levy ballots have been returned

Posted at 6:05 PM, Sep 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-09 20:05:15-04

Billings voters have less than a week to return their completed ballots to the Yellowstone County Elections Office in the city's public safety mill levy election.

Tuesday, Sept. 15 is the deadline for ballots to be turned in.

Elections Administrator Bret Rutherford told Q2 News Wednesday that out of 60,000 ballots mailed out, close to 24,000 have already been turned in.

If passed, the public safety levy would better reflect the city's growing tax base, expanding it to deal with the increased cost of public safety.

The current public safety levy in Billings has been in place since 2004 and collects a fixed amount of $8.2 million each year.

The city is asking voters to repeal that 2004 levy and replace it with one that collects 60 mills worth of property taxes, equal to $12.2 million this year.

The proposed levy will cost $4.75/month for a median Billings home worth $212,000.