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Editorial: EDC’s boards are right on budget

The joint boards of the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission took a positive step in reaching a consensus on a proposed 2015 budget.

After four years of maintaining a flat $455,000 levy for its budget, the EDC staff recommended a $10,000 increase in the property tax levy to $465,000 levy on a $544,000 budget.

The EDC has remained very frugal with its spending and has dipped into its budget reserves in recent years to complete its budget.

“I personally believe this is an astute and austere budget,” said Kandiyohi County Commissioner Harlan Madsen.

We agree the proposed EDC’s 2015 budget remains an appropriate budget.

It is important for the EDC to maintain adequate reserve funds in order to have suitable options available when economic development opportunities arise.

An EDC hamstrung by short-sighted budget reserves policy could be detrimental to our future. It actually could cost Willmar and Kandiyohi County far more in the long term if a suitable economic development opportunity is missed.

The demonstrated budget discretion by the EDC shows they know how to be frugal and get the job done. It is good to see the wise majority of the EDC boards come to consensus on this small levy increase, following four years of no increase at all.

This is a wise investment in the future of Willmar and Kandiyohi County.