Texas-side Council OK’s Budget, Water Cost Could Spike
According the Texarkana Gazette....
The City Council on Monday voted unanimously to approve a Fiscal Year 2020 budget and leave the city's property tax rate unchanged.
That rate will remain at $0.70 per $100 valuation. The city's overall property valuation is expected to increase by more than $39 million, resulting in an increase of property tax revenue of more than $273,000. The budget projects an increase in sales tax revenue of 2%, or more than $335,000, compared with FY 2019.
The city's total revenue for the year is expected to be more than $40.5 million, with expenditures totaling more than $41.3 million, leaving more than $13.3 million in the general fund balance. That's enough for 91 days of expenditures. By city ordinance, the minimum reserve is 60 days of expenditures.
Ward 5 Council Member Bill Harp expressed gratitude to city staff for working through the annual budget process.
"I'd like to thank our city management and finance for taking care of the taxpayers' money, able to keep us at the same tax rate as the past several years," Harp said.
City Manager Shirley Jaster also recognized the staff's work.
"We feel like we have a good budget that will provide good services for the community," she said.
The budget accounts for police and firefighter seniority pay as required by law, and the Police Department will get a 3% pay increase totaling $175,000. The budget sets aside $125,000 for non-civil service compensation increases and $207,000 for Texarkana Water Utilities employee raises.