Council holding Truth in Taxation meeting

Published 7:51 am Monday, December 6, 2010

Austin residents can put in their two cents on the city’s $29 million proposed budget and tax levy Tuesday.

The city’s annual Truth in Taxation meeting is scheduled for Tuesday evening at 6 p.m., and those in attendance can discuss Austin’s proposed $29 million budget and six percent tax levy hike.

Some Austin residents may experience a barely noticeable tax increase due to the levy hike, while others could see their taxes increase by three or four percent, depending on the tax base growth within the community.

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“Nobody likes to pay more taxes, including me,” Dankert said in a previous interview. “The ultimate goal is to get citizens involved in the process and making suggestions.”

The proposed levy is $4.13 million, compared to $3.9 million last year. Though it decreased in 2002 and 2003, the levy has grown every year since 2004.

As far as the budget, the $29 million figure actually covers a number of smaller budgets, the largest of which is the city’s roughly $14 million general fund.

The state’s plans, however, could throw a wrench into how Austin moves forward with budget plans.

Local Government Aid from the state is the city’s largest source of revenue every year, averaging roughly $7 million, or about half of the city’s general fund. Austin’s budget future depends on how the State Legislature and new governor decide to handle LGA and if they continue making cuts to it.

The final levy and budget are set for approval Dec. 20.