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Hearing on city budget Tuesday at 5

By Jessica Coates
jessica.coates@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — After listening to a report from City Manager Lane Bailey, citizens will be able to voice their thoughts on the 2018-19 city budget Tuesday.

The proposed budget currently includes a one-cent property tax increase and a 2.15 percent increase in water and sewer rates.

In his message at the beginning of the proposed budget, Bailey wrote that the 2017-18 fiscal year was “difficult” with “very little growth” in the property tax base.

Bailey wrote that, because of the lack of growth in property taxes and increasing inflation costs, he was recommending a one-cent tax increase “to maintain existing services at current levels.”

Based on the median Salisbury home price of $135,500, the one-cent property tax increase would cost homeowners an extra $13.55 annually.

For a person who owns a $75,000 home, it would cost $7.50 more annually.

For a person who owns a $250,000 home, it would cost $25 more annually.

The one-cent tax increase — which would raise the city rate from .7096 to .7196 — would generate $280,421 for the city’s General Fund.

The proposed budget also makes room for salary increases for public services department employees and could include raises for fire department employees.

The Council will not be voting on the proposed budget at Tuesday’s meeting but will be holding a public hearing to get feedback from citizens.

Other items on the agenda include:

• Council will consider adopting an ordinance that would allow a 150-lot subdivision to be built.

The Salisbury Planning Board voted to recommend adopting the ordinance at its May 8 meeting.

The ordinance will rezone a tract of land along Earnhardt Road to begin Phase 2 of Drummond Village.

At the May 8 Planning Board meeting, Planning and Development Manager Preston Mitchell said it would be the first subdivision to be built in Salisbury “in quite some time.”

• Council will consider approving a request to rename part of the greenway after Bill Stanback.

The Tuesday meeting will mark the end of a 30-day public input period on the potential name change.

If the name change is approved, a renaming ceremony will be planned for the Prescott section of the greenway.

• Mayor Al Heggins will give council and citizens an update on her trip to Salisbury’s sister city — Salisbury, England.

• Council will consider approving funds for the upcoming fiscal year for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and HOME programs.

The programs are budgeted for $427,661.

The Salisbury City Council will meet Tuesday at 5 p.m. at City Hall — 217 South Main Street.

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.

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