City of Georgetown asking for resident feedback on FY 2022 budget

The City of Georgetown is asking the public for feedback on the preliminary Fiscal Year 2022 budget.

Residents can respond via an online comment box through Sept. 5 or attend any of the public hearings throughout the budget adoption process. Public comments and feedback will then be provided to City Council for its Sept. 14 meeting, during which the council is scheduled to hold public hearings and first readings of both the tax rate and the budget.

The city says that the budget adoption timeline currently is:

  • July 26 & 27: Council budget workshops
  • Aug. 10: First presentation of the full budget; City Council sets maximum tax rate and public hearing dates
  • Sept. 5: Comments on draft budget close
  • Sept. 14: Public hearings and first reading of both the tax rate and the budget
  • Sept. 28: Second reading and final adoption of the tax rate and budget

The preliminary budget totals $483 million and decreases the City’s property tax rate by 1.4 cents from 41.8 cents per $100 valuation to 40.4 cents. This is the second year in a row the City has proposed reducing the property tax rate, maintaining the City’s rate as the lowest of all cities in the Austin area with a population greater than 20,000. 

Council also recently voted to increase the homestead exemption to the greater of $5,000 or 3 percent, contributing to $370,000 in additional taxpayer relief. However, because property values in Georgetown increased 15.4 percent, the average homeowner in Georgetown is expected to pay $71 more in property taxes in the upcoming year.

City staff used the results of recent public feedback opportunities, including the 2020 resident survey and council goals, to develop a preliminary version of next year’s budget, which spans Oct. 1, 2021, through Sept. 30, 2022. Staff presented the preliminary budget to City Council on July 26, and the council continued the discussion during its July 27 workshop. 

Major themes of the preliminary budget are investing in transportation and utility infrastructure, public safety, and customer services, as well as providing the staffing, equipment, and software needed for record-setting growth and development.

The city says that adequately funding those priorities—particularly transportation and water capital improvement projects ($90 million), public safety investments, and staffing and resources needed to maintain service levels during Georgetown’s sustained period of high growth—contributed to the preliminary budget being $87 million, or 18 percent, more than the current fiscal year’s budget of $396 million.

For more information about the annual budget process and details and documents about the preliminary FY2022 budget, click here.

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