Raleigh city manager proposes tax increase

May 20, 2008 11:36:47 AM PDT
City Manager Russell Allen proposed a 5-cent tax increase for the 2008-2009 operating budget for the City of Raleigh.

Such an increase would put Raleigh's tax rate at 38.17 cents per $100 of assessed property value.

Raleigh's current tax rate is 43.5 cents, but it will be reduced down to 33.17 cents (the revenue-neutral) rate before any increases.

Allen said a property tax increase would be used to sustain existing operating costs which face revenue shortfalls and rising costs.

bulk of the proposed property tax increase would help pay for parks bonds approved last year and a new public safety center.

Allen says the increase is needed because the city is getting $5 million less than projected due to a loss in sales tax revenue that Allen chalks up to the current economic downturn.

Increases in fuel costs and health insurance costs also contribute to the need for the tax hike, Allen says.

The city council will now begin its budget deliberations and will have a budget in place by the 1st of July.

Allen also is proposing a 15% increase in the cost of water and wastwater. He says that would amount to a proposed increase of $4.86 a month for the average residential water customer.