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      How national budget issues affect budgets locally

      While the issues that have plagued the national budget may not directly affect "local" government budgets, some say it will have significant effects on the state that could trickle down to the local level.

      Ottumwa City Administrator, Joe Helfenberger, says he doesn't think the federal budget dysfunction will affect us immediately locally, but he is concerned with the effects it could have on the state down the road.

      He said state lawmakers are working with a commercial property tax reduction to be able to subsidize for a three-year period.

      That could cause Ottumwa to have a half-million dollar loss in revenue overnight.

      Helfenberger told us the city's top priority over the next several years is to develop growth in the tax base..

      "We need to be working on developing the tax base growth as much as possible in order to offset it enough that we don't have significant reduction in services," said Helfenberger.

      Helfenberger also expressed concern over a portion of the tax reduction that includes the multi-family development that could have an approximately $50,000 effect on Ottumwa's budget.