City Council approves budget, tax rate

Members maintain 67.5-cent levy as revenue forecast to increase by $1.6M

Bill Spinks
Midlothian Mirror
The letter M is displayed outside Midlothian City Hall at 104 West Avenue E.

In a short special meeting last Tuesday, the Midlothian City Council approved a new budget and ad valorem property tax rate for the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

The council held a record vote to adopt the budget for the new fiscal year, which begins on Oct. 1 and passed by a 7-0 roll-call vote. City manager Chris Dick said the budget includes the general fund, utility fund, the Mid-Town Public Improvement District and other funds.

A separate record vote was taken to approve the senior citizen fund and passed 6-0 with councilmember Justin Coffman, who sits on the senior citizen advisory council, recusing himself from the vote.

The budget is available for review on the Midlothian city website, Dick noted.

The city will maintain the same tax rate as the current year to fund the new budget, at 67.5 cents per $100 valuation. The rate includes 38.0002 cents dedicated for maintenance and operations, and 29.4998 cents dedicated to a sinking fund to pay principal and interest on the city’s indebtedness.

The maintained rate will result in just under $1.6 million in increased revenue to the city when compared to the current fiscal year. Of that amount, all but about $120,000 was a result of new value added to the tax rolls, Dick said.

Dick said even though the tax rate remains the same, it represents a 3.66-percent increase over the “no new revenue” tax rate that state law enacted in 2019 requires taxing bodies to calculate. Therefore, language is required to be added to the motion that a tax rate increase is being enacted.

The record vote for the rate was 7-0, with a separate vote to ratify the increase in dollars also passing 7-0.

 “I think it’s pretty good that we’re such a rapidly-growing city and I believe this budget addresses a lot of infrastructure needs,” Coffman said. “The voters just approved a bond that will be addressing those issues. With the amount of inflation that’s taking place and expenses going up for everything, we’re still able to keep the tax rate the same. I think it’s a good budget and a good tax rate, in my opinion.”

After the voting was done, Mayor Richard Reno praised city staff for its work in crafting the new budget.

In one other agenda item, the council approved an $8,000 expenditure from Midlothian Economic Development for a contribution toward a career center for job training.