The Warren County Board of Supervisors set the proposed tax rates and fiscal 2022 budget for the upcoming public hearing.
Supervisors voted 5-0 on Tuesday in favor of a motion to advertise tax rates on real estate and personal property as well as the proposed budget for the public hearing on April 15 in the Warren County Government Center. Supervisors could act on the budget and tax rates at their April 27 meeting.
Interim County Administrator Edwin Daley and supervisors propose no change in the tax rates - 65.5 cents per $100 of assessed value on real estate and $4 per $100 of assessed value on personal property such as vehicles. Rates on other personal property also remain unchanged.
Daley presented the proposed budget and tax rates at the meeting. The proposed budget of $124,615,000 reflects a $6,003,691 increase in spending, or 5.06%, over the current $118,611,309 in the current fiscal period. The budget includes $63,945,000 for Warren County Public Schools and $3,197,500 for the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority. Of the total for the school system, $27,720,000 comes from local funds.
Highlights of the proposed budget include several new positions – grants coordinator, information technology, deputy registrar and a self-sufficiency specialist.
Costs driving the budget include $300,000 to implement the next phase of changes to employee salaries; funding mandated overtime pay for the Department of Fire and Rescue Services; an agreement over water service rates for Dominion; and county funding to cover EDA debt, operations and ongoing litigation.
The board can adopt a tax rate at or below the levy advertised for the public hearing. Supervisors would need to hold another public hearing if they choose to consider levies that exceed the advertised rates.
Also at the meeting, the board voted to:
• Authorize the purchases of two new vehicles for the Building Inspections and Planning departments – 2021 Ford Explorers at $30,320 each – through a state contract and paid for with funds in the agencies’ current budgets. Board members voted 5-0 in favor of the motion to approve the requests after discussing the matter with county officials.
• Approve a request by the Warren County Public Schools to appropriate an additional $2,380,365 to the division. The School Board intends to budget $1 million toward capital improvement projects and $380,365 to the textbook fund and $1 million to set up a transportation fund that officials have said they plan to use to start replacing buses. Supervisors voted 5-0 on the motion to approve the request after discussing the matter with county officials and Superintendent Christopher Ballenger.
• Approve payment of a $50 coyote bounty to Douglas Boyd.
• Reappoint Carolyn Kissinger and Stacy Wilson to the Parks and Recreation Commission.
Board Chairwoman Cheryl L. Cullers, Vice Chairman Archie A. Fox and supervisors Tony F. Carter, Walter J. Mabe and Delores R. Oates attended the meeting.