The proposed rate is $0.02 lower than the rate that was approved for the 2021-22 budget, according to the council agenda. Council members also called for a public hearing to be held during a general meeting on Sept. 12, the same night the tax rate is expected to be approved. Council members will also be able to lower the rate further before officially adopting the tax rate.
City Council members can set the rate as low as $0.4176 per $100 valuation, which would earn the same amount of revenue as the year before, Budget Director Karen Rhodes-Whitley said during a presentation.
The overall tax rate is made up of two rates, the maintenance and operations rate and the interest and sinking, or debt service, rate, according to the presentation. This year’s proposed tax rate would continue to shift funding from the operations rate into the debt service rate, a process that started with last year’s tax rate, according to the proposed FY 2022-23 budget.
This shift provides debt service for the $364 million bond referendum passed by voters in 2021 as it assists in covering increased debt expected over the next three years, according to Rhodes-Whitley’s presentation.