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City eyes tax rate cut

August 9, 2011

City Finance Director Peggy Walker, left, listens as City Manager Gary Fuqua speaks during a budget work session Monday evening. (HERALD photo/Thomas Jenkins)

City Manager Gary Fuqua presented the Big Spring City Council with the proposed 2011-2012 budget during a work session Monday, and much like life in sweltering West Texas has been, it was a good news and bad news fiscal situation.

The proposed budget is based on a 94.95-cent per $100 valuation tax rate, a drop of 5 cents compared to last year's 99.95 cent rate.

The rate consists of 62.1317 cents toward the municipality's general fund; 8.5 cents for the Big Spring Police Department Narcotics Task Force; 20.7249 cents for general obligation bonds issued in 2007 on voter approval; .7133 cents for certificates of obligation issued in 2007; and 2.8801 cents for certificates of obligation issued in 2010 to finance the newly constructed city aquatic center.

Mayor Tommy Duncan and several of the council members applauded Fuqua and the city staff for the reduction in the tax rate, a priority which was a large part of his political platform when he ran for the office more than a year ago.

Unfortunately, money saved by property owners through the tax rate isn't likely to stay in city residents' pockets, as the base rate for municipal water customers will almost double in the coming fiscal year.

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