Proposed Aberdeen Budget Keeps Same Property Tax
by Mary Griffin
Aberdeen isn't planning to raise its property tax rate, according to its proposed 2008-2009 budget.
The budget, presented at a public hearing during the Town Board meeting Monday night, will be finalized during a June 16 meeting.
"This proposed document provides for the recurring service needs of our town within a strict operating budget and finances the costs of providing these services with accurate and dependable revenue estimates," Town Manager Bill Zell read from a prepared statement. "The objective of the proposed budget is to hold operating expenses to a minimum while providing essential municipal services to our citizens. The town continues to provide an extensive base of services while keeping the rate of taxation as low as possible."
While the property tax rate would remain unchanged, the overall budget shows a 8.75 percent increase in the total town property assessment. The general fund budget will total $5,945,615, which is a 2.8 percent increase from the current year. The water and sewer budget totals $2,076,227, which is a 9.86 percent increase over the current year.
Moore County had raised the wastewater treatment cost to $2 per gallon from $1.40, which is nearly a 43 percent increase for the fiscal year.
"The water and sewer system has been and continues to be one of the town's strongest assets and this year will be no different," Zell said. "We will continue to upgrade our system by making the necessary repairs and replacements to various lines, and by locating and developing new well sites, which will allow us to meet future water demands."
The total 2008-2009 proposed budget is $8,021,842, and includes personnel, facilities, capital outlay, special appropriations and revenues.
The budget includes a 4 percent across-the-board salary adjustment for all full- and part-time employees, as well as continuing medical, dental and life insurance coverage, and full-time employees' 401K retirement plan.
The budget also includes five new full-time positions and one new part-time position in the administration department, finance operations, the Police Department, Planning Department, public works, and parks and recreation.
Capital outlay provides for three new police cruisers and a new engine pumper, all of which will be financed. A new dump truck will be purchased for public works.
The same nonprofit agencies that the town has supported in the past will receive funding again this year: the Aberdeen Lions' Club for its display of American flags along U.S. 1, the Walter Hines Page Library, the Malcolm Blue Farm and Historical Society, the Aberdeen Postmaster's House, the Moore County Chamber of Commerce, Partners in Progress and the Rooster's Wife.
In other business, the board adopted a text amendment to provide for the consumption of alcoholic beverages on public property to reflect the town's new Lake Park Recreation Station on U.S. 1. Alcohol may be consumed within the building, provided those renting the property work directly with the ABC Board and make the proper deposits to the town.
The town also adopted a new fee schedule for the Lake Park Recreation Station.
Contact Mary Griffin via e-mail at email@example.com.
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