Wednesday, June 1, 2011

GOP plan cuts tax rate, sends more to CMS

Mecklenburg's four Republican county commissioners rolled out a plan late Tuesday evening to cut spending far enough to lower the property tax rate by five cents. Read the proposal below

The proposal from commissioners Karen Bentley, Neil Cooksey, Bill James and Jim Pendergraph came hours before the county board is set to begin taking tentative votes on the 2011-12 budget. Bentley emailed the plan to the Observer late Tuesday.

The plan includes some $55.9 million in proposed cuts, but also would send an additional $15.4 million to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. That could help the district save 260 teaching positions.

Republican commissioners have long said they would not support a budget with a tax rate higher than the so-called revenue-neutral levy. That would let the county raise about the same amount of money through property taxes next year. The GOP proposal sets the tax rate at 78.45 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, which is just below the neutral level. -- APRIL BETHEA

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GOP Propose ‘Revenue Negative’ Rate

Right –sized budget cuts tax rate 5.42 cents

Charlotte, NC (5-31-2011) – The Republican Caucus of the Mecklenburg Countybelow the ‘revenue neutral’ rate of 78.83 set by law. Here is a summary of the various proposed budgets: Board of Commissioners is proposing a budget that helps fund CMS teacher positions during the Great Recession while reducing the tax rate 5.42 cents below the current rate and lowering the burden of revaluation. The Republican Commissioners “revenue negative” rate can be achieved with right-sized budget cuts. The GOP budget increases funding for CMS $15,401,620 from the FY2011 budget to fund 260 high priority teaching positions while decreasing the Manager’s Budget overall by $43,523,119. The resulting tax rate is

  • Prior Year (2011) County Budget 83.87 tax rate $ 954,844,690
  • Manager’s Proposed (2012) Budget 82.49 tax rate Incr of $77,323,005 $1,032,167,695
  • Cogdell’s Proposed (2012) Budget 82.97 tax rate Incr of $75,997,406 $1,030,942,096
  • GOP’s Proposed (2012) Budget 78.45 tax rate Incr of $33,799,886 $ 988,644,576

So, how does this proposal balance the Mecklenburg County Budget, cut costs and increase funding to schools, while at the same time achieving a revenue negative tax rate? Here’s a summary:

  • Manager’s Proposed Budget (without CMS increase) $1,006,078,584
  • Increase in staff estimate for Sales Tax $ 3,000,000
  • Increase for CMS $ 15,401,620
  • Increase for DV and Sheriff $ 145,000
  • Decreases in other areas (see below) ($ 55,924,844)
  • GOP Proposed Budget $ 988,644,576

Highlights of the cost savings from the Manager’s proposed budget are as follows (speadsheet details to follow shortly):

  • Decrease funding for DSS as proposed by Commissioner Codgell, $2,000,000
  • Reduce proposed increase for OPEB’s (from $8 million), $2,500,000
  • Reduce proposed increase for employee 401k matches, $2,500,000
  • Reduce County funding for ‘retiree’ health costs, $2,350,000
  • Reduce “pay for performance” (raises) by ½, $2,100,000
  • Reduce proposed increase in “Capital Reserve,” $2,350,000
  • Reduce “CMC healthcare Contract,” $1,499,016
  • Reduce proposed increase for “Libraries,” $1,000,000
  • Reduce ”Substance Abuse” prohibiting taxpayer funding of multiple detox/yr, $3,000,000
  • Eliminate funding for new Outside Agencies (approx. total), $ 1,220,949
  • Eliminate proposed increase in Public Assistance, $2,656,839
  • Reduce proposed increase in County Training budget, $550,000
  • Reduce proposed increase in Technology Reserve, $500,000
  • Eliminate proposed increase in “Homeless Support Services,"$426,936

Items in red are those proposed by Commissioner Cogdell at varying amounts (except the first which the GOP and Commissioner Cogdell agree on – a cut of $2 million to DSS).

5 comments:

Alexander said...

Will there be at least 1 Democrat who votes for fiscal sanity?

Anonymous said...

Looks like county employees & the poor are taking a hit in this budget. If republicans believe county employees don't deserve any raise or benefits, why don't they just come out and say it? The numbers tells the story when you look at the cuts.

I'm all for "fiscal sanity," but it's amazing to see where the GOP chooses to make the cuts. It's with working people who actually GO TO WORK for a living. SAD.

CMS yet again gets a free pass with tax dollars (zero accountability). Overpaid administrators will keep their positions while teachers making 35K per year are "let go" ... SAD SAD SAD!!!

Alexander said...

Anonymous:

Pray tell how county employees are taking a hit in the Republican budget? Are any of them losing their jobs?

Anonymous said...

And now Pendergraph say he won't vote for the budget. What a grandstanding asshole that guy is.

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