Yavapai County’s overall budget is going up, but the tax rate is going down.
The budget will be nearly $228 million in the 2018 budget, which will be adopted in August. The budget is scheduled for tentative approval on Wednesday, July 5, in Prescott.
County Administrator Phil Bourdon said that $17.2 million of that budget is a one-time increase due to refinancing lease/purchase debt. This is in addition to the normal $2 million spent on debt servicing each year, for a total of $19.6 million. Last year’s budget was $205 million.
Bourdon added that revenue coming into the county has been strong, allowing for a more easilybalanced budget when accounting for expenses. The overall tax rate for the county is expected to go down by 3.5 cents per person in 2018.
The only other significant recent change brought up by Bourdon was the budgeting of funds to reduce unfunded liabilities for reimbursements to former employees.
The board also questioned the reduction of expected increase in Highway User Revenue Funds from 6 to 3 percent, event though the actual increase in 2017 was 8.5 percent.
It was explained that the baseline had been raised in 2017, and that funds are expected to not flow in at that rate continuously. Board Chairman and District 2 Supervisor Tom Thurman said that the county may not get any new funding for HURF from the state this year.
The county is also planning to add $1 million to its Flood Control District, though Bourdon noted it had been reduced in recent years.
No audience members spoke during the call to public.
In other business, District 3 Supervisor Randy Garrison noted that the walls of the board meeting room were now adorned with art from Mingus Union High School students, and said that his hopes were to have all Verde Valley schools rotate art through.
The board also honored Leonard Chester Nowroci with a flag flown over the Prescott Courthouse on his 100th birthday, June 15. The board thanked Nowroci for his service in World War II.