Photo by Chad Koenen
The Deer Creek Fire Department is planning a training at a dilapidated house at 107 N Clark St. in Deer Creek on October 14. The house has been condemned by the Deer Creek City Council.

By Chad Koenen


With a number of projects on the horizon and some aging infrastructure, the Deer Creek City Council approved a 10 percent increase in its preliminary tax levy last week.

The approval came during the city’s regularly scheduled meeting last Monday night. The 2024 preliminary tax levy can be lowered before it is finalized prior to the end of the year, but cannot be raised from a 10 percent increase. 

The 10 percent increase is similar to last year’s tax levy increase and will help the city to fund several projects that will need to be addressed in the near future. 

City Clerk/Treasurer Tom Parish said the city has some road projects on the horizon and has an aging water and sewer infrastructure that is reaching an age that may need to be addressed in the near future. 

“We need to do some things in the community to fix some things that need to be done,” said Parish.

The 10 percent increase will result in approximately $10,000 in additional tax money for 2024. The hope was raising the levy a bit more next year will allow the city to put some money away to spend on upcoming projects. 

In other news

• Heard the Deer Creek Fire Department is planning to burn the condemned residence at 107 Clark St. on October 14. The plan is to begin burning the house around 8 a.m. and will wrap up around lunch time. 

• Heard the monthly police report from the New York Mills Police Department. The police department provided 30 hours of service for the month of August and responded to 22 calls. 

• Heard a report from Rick Schara from West Central Initiative about some of the programs the organization provides throughout the region. Schara and members of WCI have visited with a number of cities and counties to discuss some of the ways that the organization has assisted local businesses and organizations through the years. Joining Schara for the meeting was Otter Tail County Commissioner Kurt Mortenson, who also serves on the WCI Board. 

• Heard the city received a SCDP for $581,430 from HUD. The grant will help to fund approximately a majority of the repairs at the Deer Creek water tower.

• Approved the 2024 police contract with the NY Mills Police Department. The contract calls for a 3 percent increase in the rate paid by the City of Deer Creek for police service in the community.