September 20, 2019

The FY 2020 Budget, and How We Got There

The outcome of this year’s budget process is an adopted budget that represents a 4.4% property tax revenue increase, down from the original 8% proposal.  The resulting tax rate increase for maintenance and operations, calculated in accordance with the state Truth-in-Taxation (TnT) formula, is 2.4%, well within the new 3.5% rollback rate that will go into effect next year.  The impact on a home at the average value in Bellaire of $936,582 will be $93 versus last year:

1  The City Manager revised his proposed budget upon receipt of the certified tax roll, to credit better-than-projected growth from new construction, and also to correct an error in Fire Department part-time pay and in response to Council feedback to eliminate a budget enhancement for closed captioning.
2  The proposed budget was further revised, primarily as a result of continued negotiations with our employee health insurance carrier, along with some other, minor modifications.
3  Impacts for these given appraised values are calculated assuming the homestead exemption, but not senior/disabled exemptions.
4  The $145 I previously reported was based on an average appraised value of $937,657, which decreased slightly to $936,582 upon receipt of the certified tax roll.

September 12, 2019

Celebrating Our New Municipal Facilities

In what has been much more a marathon than a sprint, we’ve finally reached the finish line and are ready to cut the ribbon.  We’ve marked some important milestones along the way, from the initial groundbreaking ceremony, to the opening of the new City Hall and Council Chamber, and the formal dedication of the Norman-Zarate Police & Municipal Court building.  Now that the final piece is in place with the completion of the Civic Center, it’s time to celebrate!