After months of research and development, the evening of Sept. 15 the Hutto City Council voted to adopt the City’s annual budget for Fiscal Year 2023 and the corresponding tax rate.
Hutto City Council approved a property tax rate of $0.42198 per $100 valuation for the 2022-23 fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1. The approved rate is the no-new-revenue (NNR) rate, which is lower than the current rate of $0.536448. (The NNR rate is the tax rate at which the city would raise the same amount of property tax revenue as it did the previous fiscal year before taking into account newly-built properties.) Under the new rate, the average Hutto homeowner can expect an decrease in their yearly tax bill of 5.28%, or approximately $67, due to the City adopting the NNR.
The rate brings the City's total expected tax levy for FY 2022-23 to $16.6 million, up approximately 18% from $14.1 million in FY 2021-22.
At the same meeting, the City Council voted to adopt a $104.5 million budget for FY23.
City staff had initially proposed a budget in July that used the NNR tax rate. Valuable conversations and compromises took place at a series of Council meetings, as the Council considered a variety of spending, revenue, and debt options. The resulting outcome from the Sept. 15 vote will improve Hutto taxpayers' local quality of life and provide the most urgently needed public infrastructure.
The approved budget will also help the City to maintain financial stability by continuing to shore up the City’s savings account, known as fund reserves. City Manager James Earp responded to Council questioning at a recent Council meeting explaining the importance of cash flow and fund reserves; click here to watch the short (5-minute) video clip of this explanation. That said, the City may use some its current reserves to help fund needed infrastructure, in addition to bond issuances. (Authorized bonds include $25 million in general obligation bonds for road and drainage projects, including three projects on FM 1660 among other work, as well as $53 million in certificates of obligation for the most critical of water/wastewater system improvements for the next couple of years.)
In case you missed them, the City issued many communications by mail, email, and social media the past couple of months to educate the public about the proposed budget, spending specifics, and the potential impacts on all aspects of our community. Public feedback was very helpful to this important process. Stay tuned for updates as the new fiscal year kicks off in October!