Albemarle Budget Proposal Calls For Tax Hike

By: Jaclyn Piermarini Email
By: Jaclyn Piermarini Email

Feburary 21, 2014

A new budget was proposed to the Albemarle County Supervisors this morning. But the new plan could mean an increase for tax payers.

County executive Tom Foley presented the $349.3-million budget proposal. In recent years, the county budget was based on an equalized rate, which meant most of us had the same tax bills because of the economic downturn and real estate assessments.

Foley says not this year.

"The bottom line is, we are having a very modest revenue picture as we look at the year ahead. The economy has not taken off like we hoped it would. So overall in this economy you see some positive signs in this budget in terms of our revenues. But nothing to write home about if you will."

The proposed tax rate would go up as much as 1.7 cents per $100 of assessed value. The tax rate would go from 76.6 to be 78.3 cents. Operating costs are up 2.6 percent.

"We are growing concerned about the capacity of our staff to keep up with the new demands as the ecomony recovers, as there are more building inspections and things going on, because we have cut back so much over the last four years, 66 positions eliminated, we are concerned at this point that the capacity of our staff with keep up quality services is a big challenge."

There is a 2 percent pay increase for county staff. The school system is getting a little bit more than they expected, about $831,000 more, but that still doesn't account for the $5.8-million budget gap.

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