Without further ado, the Henderson City Council adopted the proposed FY 2018-19 budget at their Monday, June 11, 2018, meeting.
After hearing a brief summary of the overall budget from City Manager Frank Frazier, who thanked council members for the meetings and work sessions that were held to get to that point in the budget process, the approximately $44 million budget was approved.
Frazier said he felt encouraged about the budget thanks, in part, to an increase in the amount of sales tax collected this past fiscal year. “We were slightly ahead of projections,” Frazier reported. “Whereas some projections by different agencies increased that [collection rate] to 4%, we used a more conservative approach at 2%.”
Frazier also reported an increase in the personal/real property tax collection rate as performed by the Vance County Tax Office. “This collection helped increase our revenue projections for the upcoming year and staff worked hard over the last several years in becoming a safer workforce and obtaining a better worker’s comp rate,” said Frazier.
The increase in tax collection has also helped to offset the less than 1% lower personal property value from the previous fiscal year.
Budgeted funds for the final phase in a five-year pay class study allows for a 5% pay increase for City employees effective August 9, 2018. According to Frazier, “This helps us to reduce our turnover rate and also helps us compete with our neighboring jurisdictions.”
As previously reported to WIZS by Henderson City Councilman Garry Daeke, the turnover rate for City of Henderson employees has dropped from 20% to 5% since the implementation of the five-year study.
This year’s budget was approved with no tax rate increase, keeping the rate steady at approximately 71 cents per $100 of property value. Sanitary sewer and sanitation rates also remain unchanged.
A 5% water rate increase was approved, which will allow for the completion of several infrastructure projects with streets, water and sewer as well as equipment purchases.
As Frazier stated in previous budget documentation “Whereas not all needs are met, as in most budgets, I believe this budget represents further positive steps in areas not funded previously, which will help the City continue to grow and reach its full potential again.”
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