RADFORD –City Manager David Ridpath presented Radford City Council with a balanced budget for fiscal year 2024 with no tax increases at a March 29 presentation.
The $34,033,899 total budget does include an increase in the water and sewer charge but does not include an increase in real estate tax, meals tax, lodging or other taxes.
“Breathe a sigh of relief,” said Ridpath. “There is no tax rate increase proposed in this budget.”
“We tried to be conservative and base the budget practically, based on trends,” he added.
Of that $34 million-plus total budget, 43 percent represents the general fund, 36 percent is the electric fund, the water/wastewater fund is eight percent, transit is seven percent, the street fund is four percent, and the solid waste fund is two percent.
Revenues for the general fund come from the following primary sources: property tax- 31 percent; state and federal funds- 22 percent; local taxes including the local portion of sales tax, meals taxes, and lodging- 15 percent. The city will also transfer $3,714,796 from electric sales revenue into the general fund.
The breakdown of spending categories for the city includes 28 percent for public safety, 26 percent for education, 13 for health and welfare, 11 for general government administration, eight for leisure services, five for judicial administration, four for public works, three for debt service and two for planning and community development.
Water charges will increase by $4 for the first 4,000 gallons of water, meaning the minimum charge will go from $16.32 a month to $20.32. Wastewater (sewer) rates will increase by $ for the first 2,000, taking the minimum charge from $12.24 a month to $14.24.
The budget includes a seven percent COLA (Cost Of Living Adjustment) raise for city employees.
The next step in the budget process is a public hearing on Monday, April 10 during the regularly scheduled city council meeting, which begins at 7 p.m.