The cost of living in Goldsboro would be more expensive for residents under the city manager’s proposed budget for 2021-22.
The city’s property tax would go up by 3 cents, and water and sewer rates would increase by 15%.
Under City Manager Tim Salmon’s budget proposal, the city’s property tax would increase to 68 cents from 65 cents per $100 valuation.
On a $200,000 home, a Goldsboro homeowner would pay $60 more per year in property tax, based on a calculation on the N.C. Department of Revenue website.
The average combined water and sewer bill for customers in Goldsboro using 5,000 gallons would be about $77.81 per month as compared to the current $67.66, according to the N.C. Water and Wastewater Rates Dashboard from the UNC School of Government’s Environmental Finance Center. That’s an average increase of $10.15 for both water and sewer in the city.
Trash pickup and stormwater fees remain unchanged.
While citizens will pay more for basic services such as water and sewer in the city, hotel owners won’t see an increase as their occupancy tax remains at 5% in Goldsboro and 1% in Wayne County.
In his budget message, Salmon highlighted that the city’s $68.2 million budget, if approved, would be an increase of 6.7% or $4.3 million over the current budget.
The 600-plus page budget also includes hiring two full-time employees. One would be a computer systems administrator II, and the other would be a clubhouse manager at the Goldsboro Municipal Golf Course. The two full-time employees would increase the city’s overall workforce from 480 to 482 employees.
When it comes to the water and sewer rate increases, Salmon recommends lowering the increase in rates to 15% from a previously discussed 20% and recommends using more than $8.7 million in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 over the next two years to make infrastructure repairs to the city’s water and sewer systems.
The American Rescue Plan Act is a $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package that includes more than $350 billion in funding to states and local governments to assist with impact and recovery, according to the N.C. Association of County Commissioners.
Salmon told the City Council in May that addressing the needs of the city’s water and sewer system can’t be put off any longer.
“In my mind, this is the best way to help everybody whether you’re a citizen or a business in the city of Goldsboro,” Salmon said. “Eventually, we’re going to save you some tax money and rate increases by addressing this stuff with the monies coming down from the federal government right now.”
The City Council will meet Monday at 3 p.m. for a work session to discuss Salmon’s budget proposal. A public hearing is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday concerning the proposed budget and the water and sewer and property tax increases. The work session and hearing will take place in council chambers at City Hall, 214 N. Center St.
Salmon’s recommended budget was made available online Tuesday at goldsboronc.gov. The proposed budget also is available for public inspection at city hall between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.
Notice of the public hearing was sent out Wednesday.