Looking Ahead in Wayne

March 22, 2023

City Council Meetings

Regular Wayne City Council meetings are at 5:30 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of each month in City Hall at 3rd and Pearl Streets. We would love to see you join us!

Sewer Backups - Check With Your Local Insurance Agent for Coverage!

The City Council had the difficult decision to accept or deny a sanitary sewer claim made by a resident at its latest meeting. The issue at hand came from a sewer back up last November. While the blockage occurred in a City main, and sewage backed up into a private residence, the City's insurance provider denied the claim, stating the City was not negligent in its maintenance of the line. Unfortunately, the property owner did not have a check valve (a device to keep flow going in one direction) or property insurance to cover the back up. The Council decided to pay for the cleanup of the sewage, but it will consider at a later meeting if it pays for property damage after the owner gets bids for the work. 

While researching past sewer back up claims to the City, City staff found a "Looking Ahead" article by then-City Administrator Lowell Johnson in 2007 with the heading, "Consider adding sewer backup coverage to your household insurance: Why?" Johnson gave a nice synopsis of causes to backups. He wrote this as the City's insurance had just issued a claim denial for a City main backup that had caused residential damage. This is my public service announcement to have all City sewer customers check with your local insurance carriers to see what coverage, if any, you have for sewer backups. While they don't happen very often, backups can cause major damage if not caught soon enough. Another option to minimize the risk of these backups is to consult with a plumber to see if a check valve is an option for your service line (most "newer" homes would have this apparatus). Please at least know your options and costs to protect your property.

Where Do Your Property Taxes Go?

While very few people like to pay property taxes, do you ever stop to think where those dollars go? Whether you write a check once or twice a year, or if you pay them monthly into an escrow account, you likely have an opinion about who gets to use these taxes. The use of property taxes is listed on your tax statements for the amounts each taxing entity collects from your bill (minus any administrative fees at the County level). If your property lies inside the City of Wayne's corporate limits, the following is a breakdown of your 2022 property taxes with a mill levy (or rate) of $1.851146. For every dollar ($1.00) you pay in property taxes, under $0.23 goes to the City (this includes City government, City debt, and the Wayne Municipal Airport), under $0.57 goes to Wayne Public Schools (general and debt), just under $0.13 goes to Wayne County, and $0.05 goes to Northeast Community College. The remaining approximate $0.02 goes to a combination of the Lower Elkhorn Natural Resource District, Educational Service Unit #1 and the Wayne Agricultural Society (Wayne County Fair). Please note that if your property lies outside of Wayne city limits, these figures and entities will change. 

Questions, comments, concerns? Contact Wes Blecke, City Administrator at 375-1733 or by email.