A proposed recalculation of charges for Rochester’s downtown special services district will be up for discussion Monday.

The Rochester Downtown Alliance board is recommending a one-time, zero percent increase to it’s annual levy.

The decision came after businesses in the district received notices of a planned 8 percent increase to the amount collected.

“We could have pushed to keep our 8 percent, but the idea in doing this is showing our solidarity with the city and the county, because they are both trying very hard to zero out their tax (levy) increases,” said Holly Masek. The RDA’s executive director.

According to the RDA’s 2019 annual report, special district charges to properties accounted for a third of its revenue for the year.

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As designed, the special district, which currently includes 153 taxable properties and is slated to remain in place through 2025, is slated to see an annual adjustment to its levy calculation formula each year, and adjustments are slated to range from 4 percent to 8 percent.

The annual increase doesn’t automatically drive up charges for each individual property. Rather, it’s an overall amount collected with each property charged based on its percentage of the district’s overall tax capacity, which increased by nearly 14.5 percent in this year.

Masek said that means an 8 percent adjustment would have left 53 properties with reduced charges and 82 others would have seen increases of $20 or less. The remaining 18 properties were facing higher increases.

Under the revised proposal, adjustments are being recalculated with deeper cuts expected to the 53 properties and reduced increases for the others. Few, if any, property owners can expect to see the charges remain the same as this year, due to property value shifts in the district.

The Rochester City Council is required to conduct a public hearing regarding the annual service charges. The hearing is part of it’s meeting at 3:30 p.m. Monday in council chambers of the city-county Government Center at 151 Fourth St. SE. It will livestream at www.rochestermn.gov/agendas and be available on Spectrum cable channel 180 or 188.


Meetings scheduled to be held during the week of Oct. 19 include:


  • City Council, 3:30 p.m. Monday in the council chambers of the city-county Government Center, 151 Fourth St. SE. The council will meet as the city’s Economic Development Authority following the meeting. The meetings will livestream at www.rochestermn.gov/agendas and be available on Spectrum cable channel 180 or 188.
  • Park Board study session, 4:45 p.m. Tuesday in the Parks and Recreation Office of City Hall, 201 Fourth St. SE. Video will be posted online following the meeting.
  • Ethical Practices Board, 3 p.m. Tuesday online with connection information available at http://rochestercitymn.iqm2.com/Citizens/Default.aspx
  • Zoning Board of Appeals, 7 p.m. Wednesday. The meeting will livestream at www.rochestermn.gov/agendas
  • Police Policy Oversight Commission, 4 p.m. Thursday, by virtual meeting. Details for connecting to the meeting are expected to be posted at www.rochestermn.gov/agendas.

Olmsted County

Rochester Public Schools

  • School Board, 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the boardroom of the Edison Building, 615 Seventh St. SW. Livestream at youtube.com/ISD535

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