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A $76.9 million budget for 1998 that holds the line on property taxes was reviewed Wednesday afternoon by the Genesee County Legislature.

The spending plan, the fifth prepared by county manager Jay A. Gsell, pegs the county's property-tax rate at $8.46 per $1,000 assessed valuation, the same as the current year.

The budget is more than $4 million higher than in 1997. The addition of a $9 million courthouse and two other county buildings and 14 new positions, including a full-time public defender and three new Buildings & Grounds positions, contributed to the increase.

The total to be raised by property taxes increases from $14.9 million to $15.1 million. Gsell said this is offset by a $20 million increase in assessed property values. A public hearing will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 10 in the Office for the Aging, 45 Liberty St.

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