County holds line on taxes, budget up 9.4 % over last year
August 29, 2013, 7:00 pm by James Walker
The Burnet County Commissioners have approved a Fiscal Year 2014 budget and a tax rate that will generate the same amount of tax revenue as FY 2013.
The commission also decided not to lend their support to a proposed dredging and blasting plan to deepen the harbor at the Peninsula subdivision on Lake Buchanan after nearby residents expressed concern about potential damage to their homes and water supply.
The commissioners approved a FY 2014 budget of $23,931,780, and an ad valorem tax rate of .3951. The FY 2014 expenditures are a 9.4 percent increase over FY 2013ís $21,871,479.
The FY 2014 tax rate is higher than FY 2013ís .3934 because more people in the county turned 65 and became eligible for an exemption and have their taxes frozen.
Property tax revenue is up 2.9 percent this year, $17,255,573 to last yearís $16,761,190, because of an increase in county property values.
The 2014 tax rate of .3951 equates to taxes of $395.10 per $100,000 valuation.
Valuations for the average home in Burnet Countyfor 2013 increased by an estimated average of 1.3 percent, county auditor Karen Lester said.
County taxes for FY 2013 on a $180,225 home, which was the county average, were $709 based on the adopted tax rate of .3934.
County taxes for FY 2014 on the same home if its valuation did not increase would be $712, which is an increase of $3.
If the same home increased in appraised value by 1.3 percent, taxes would increase by $9.47 per year or $0.79 per month in FY 2014.
The FY 2014 budget expenditures include a two percent cost of living adjustment (COLA) for county employees and a three percent market adjustment pool in each departmentís budget, which department heads can use to bring employees up to the market rate for salaries.
The commissioners have pronounced themselves happy with the budget and their success at keeping the tax rate the same as last year.
"Itís a good budget and the county is in good shape financially,Ē County Judge Donna Klaeger said.
After agreeing at their Aug. 13 meeting to consider expressing their support for the Peninsula Property Owners Associationís effort to win permission from the U. S. Corps of Engineers to okay the planned project to construct a new harbor for the upscale subdivisionís marina, the commissioners decided Tuesday that too many unanswered questions and possible regulations prevent action at this time.
For the full story, see the weekend edition of The Highlander.
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