During the regular Sept. 27 city council meeting, New Braunfels City Council members approved the second and final reading of ordinances adopting the operating budget and the property tax rate for fiscal year 2021-22.

During the first public hearing during a Sept. 9 special city council meeting the city council gave initial approval to adopt a balanced $322,870,698 budget which included $271,071,406 in expenditures and $51,799,292 in year-end fund balance. The proposed budget is approximately $40.81 million greater than the adopted 2020-21 budget.

Factors such as increased property tax revenue, American Rescue Plan Act funding and the return of revenue sources to pre-pandemic levels contributed to the larger budget, according to city documents.

The proposed budget includes funding for public safety efforts, infrastructure maintenance and improvements, additional city staff in various departments, compensation increases for city staff and more.

Included in the total expenditures is $90.59 million in general fund expenditures that will provide funding for public departments and services.

Public safety, which includes the budgets for the police and fire departments, accounts for 51.55% of the general fund budget for a total of $46.7 million.

The budget was calculated with a proposed combined property tax rate of $0.475376 per $100 valuation. The Interest and Sinking portion of the rate totals $0.227983 per $100 valuation and the Maintenance and Operations portion of the rate totals $0.247393 per $100 valuation.

Though the new rate is lower than the current rate of 48.3194 cents, it is approximately $0.02 per $100 valuation higher than the 44.9967 cent 2021 no-new-revenue tax rate.

The new tax rate and budget will take effect on Oct. 1 at the start of the new fiscal year.