Belton City Hall

Belton City Hall

Belton City Council members are slated to adopt a new property tax rate of 63 cents per $100 valuation next week — taxes that would fund a $36.3 million annual budget for fiscal year 2022.

The proposed budget would be a near-12.6% increase from fiscal year 2021, while the proposed ad valorem tax rate of 63 cents per $100 valuation would mark a 6.6% increase from fiscal year 2021.

“This budget will raise more total property taxes than last year’s budget by $865,593 … and of that amount $235,230 is tax revenue to be raised from new property added to the tax roll this year,” according to the city of Belton.

Under the proposed tax rate — which exceeds the no-new revenue tax rate of 59.1 cents per $100 valuation — a homeowner with a property valued at $100,000 would pay $48.30 more in city of Belton taxes.

However, Director of Finance Mike Rodgers emphasized how many residents’ property values are on the rise.

“For the 2020 tax year, our average taxable value of a single-family residence is $193,247. That particular average home would have paid $1,217 in city taxes last year,” he said on Tuesday. “For 2021, our average taxable value has increased by 8.89% to $210,594. That average home would now pay $110 more in property taxes than it did in the 2020 tax year.”

During Belton’s last City Council meeting, Rodgers said there is $16.75 million budgeted for the general fund, $1.18 million for the debt service fund, $2.7 million for special revenue funds, $11.2 million for enterprise funds, $1.36 million for internal service funds and $2.46 million for the Belton Economic Development Corp. fund.

Although Rodgers said the proposed budget could be accomplished with a tax rate of 62 cents, Belton City Council proposed a tax rate closer to 63 cents per $100 — a move that Rodgers noted would provide an additional $131,000 in funding from property taxes.

“On Aug. 10, 2021, City Council proposed a property tax rate of 63 cents per $100 in taxable value to generate additional funds to implement the fiscal year 2022 budget,” Rodgers said during a meeting on Tuesday. “The proposed budget now reflects total resources of $36,383,280 and expenditures of $34,180,640.”

Council member Guy O’Banion, however, still believes a 62 cents per $100 tax rate is feasible.

“We’re still not out of the woods with COVID,” O’Banion said during the meeting Tuesday. “There are still people hurting out there. There are still people that are a little strapped. We’re mitigating that increase in (property) value just a little bit by just going down one more penny, but we’re being more palatable and responsible with our taxpayers’ money.”

Yet Belton City Manager Sam Listi stressed that Belton’s needs are “significant” and suggested not taking “a step backwards at this point in time.”

Council members will vote on whether to adopt the $36.3 million annual budget and 63 cents per $100 tax rate during a meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.