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City plans no tax increase

McMinnville’s property tax rate will likely remain unchanged, but that decision is not final.

The city Finance Committee met Thursday and unanimously approved a recommendation to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen for the rate to remain $1.84.

“Since we are not in dire straights from the standpoint of our reserve, which is what it takes to start next year, I would recommend we keep the same tax rate,” said Finance Committee chair Everett Brock. “We don’t need a tax increase. We certainly don’t at this point in time.”

The city is projected to end the 2021-22 fiscal year June 30 with $6.1 million, which is excess revenue in the general fund and used to begin the next fiscal year. The projected ending balance for 2022-23 on June 30, 2023 is $5.3 million.

Within the budget is a $744,096 total expenditure to institute a new pay scale ($475,575) and a 3% cost-of-living adjustment ($268,521), an effort to increase pay and stem the turnover rate among employees. The 3% increase will be across the board, while the amount received of the $475,575 will vary per employee, from zero to a 37.5% salary increase for one employee.

Not discussed was a written request from Meals on Wheels for the city to restore its allocation. It, along with six other nonprofits, were eliminated from receiving city funds.

Warren County Emergency Food Bank, Meals on Wheels, Caring Hearts United, Kids of the Community, Books from Birth, Habitat for Humanity, and Business Roundtable Action Committee will receive no funding from the city unless a change is made.

The city Finance Committee’s recommendation to leave the property tax rate at $1.84 and approval of the proposed 2022-23 fiscal year budget will be sent to the full Board of Mayor and Aldermen for final approval. Being an ordinance, two passing reads are required.