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Government

Taxes, denial and alcohol: The 3 biggest stories of the Wheaton City Council's final meeting of 2013

WHEATON – During its final meeting of 2013, the Wheaton City Council made several decisions, voting down a housing development and taking measures that will affect residents' tax bills and brunch options.

Here are the three biggest stories from the council's Dec. 16 meeting:

1. The 2013 tax levy

The council unanimously approved the tax levy for next year, with a final projected levy of $18.85 million, $100,000 less than last year's requested levy .

According to Wheaton Director of Finance Robert Lehnhardt, the average owner of a Wheaton home valued at $350,000 is estimated to see a drop of about $6 in their final tax bills next year.

"We're very fortunate to be in this community, but it is very highly reliant on property taxes, and I think for the city of Wheaton to maintain its tax levy at the same level for four years should reflect very strongly and very favorably on the community," said council member Phil Suess. "And quite frankly, I would challenge the other taxing bodies that collect real estate taxes to do the same thing."

For previous coverage, visit http://shawurl.com/wyf

2. Rejection of Farnham Manor development

After an unsuccessful presentation at the Dec. 2 council meeting, a plan to subdivide a section of land in the 100 block of East Farnham Lane was unanimously voted down by the council.

Developer Cesario Builders of Oakbrook Terrace hoped to build five new homes and install a private street in the area, but the council rejected the proposal due to public opposition and zoning problems.

For previous coverage, visit http://shawurl.com/wyg

3. Allowing restaurants to serve alcohol earlier

Wheaton residents who want to sip a Bloody Mary with their brunch or buy drinks before the big football game are in luck.

The council approved an amendment to its liquor code to allow earlier alcohol sales for restaurants and grocery stores. Alcohol can now be served at businesses with liquor licenses as early as 7 a.m.

For previous coverage, visit http://shawurl.com/wyh

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