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Airport Authority enacts tax levy to pay for $55M expansion, upgrades

Airport Authority enacts tax levy to pay for $55M expansion, upgrades
Airport Authority enacts tax levy to pay for $55M expansion, upgrades(Lincoln Airport)
Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 8:09 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Lincoln Airport’s new budget includes some big upgrades over the next couple of years.

That also means if you own property in Lincoln you’ll be paying an airport tax levy for the first time in 35 years.

The Airport Authority has the ability to levy a tax but it hasn’t done so since the 1980s.

Its 2022 budget of $65 million is nearly 60% larger than the previous year, and a bulk of that money will go towards improvement projects.

Starting in January of 2022, people who live in the City of Lincoln will see an extra levy on their property tax bill.

“We’re thinking about a 15-year levy right now,” said Rachel Barth with the Airport Authority. “It’s sunset so we’re hoping after that 15 years it goes away like last time.”

It will be a $1.75 levy. That means on a $200,000 home in Lincoln you’ll pay $35 in taxes each year.

That money will go towards paying back bonds that have already been issued to pay for the upgrades as part of a $55 million expansion and renovation project split up over the next two fiscal years.

“The tax levy has not been used in about 35 years,” Barth said. “The last time it was used to actually build to the current terminal.”

The actual renovations are set to start as early as August.

They include adding 35,000 square feet, consolidating security checkpoints, and adding room for another airline to potentially move in.

“Expanding kind of opening things up,” Barth said. “Allowing some of those amenities that you come to expect at the airport are now going to be here.”

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