THE GARNER TOWN COUNCIL adopted a $37,444,625 annual operating budget for fiscal year 2019-2020. This budget was developed following a comprehensive review of current and future year requirements. As part of this review, it was determined that a combination of market forces, increasing service demands and unfunded mandates has significantly impacted the Town’s ability to fund critical operating requirements. As a result, the Town’s property tax rate was increased by 2.75 cents to 56 cents per $100 of assessed value. This will allow the Town to continue funding critical services and to meet core requirements.
The decision to raise taxes was made only after performing a review to determine the impact on Town residents and the Town’s competitiveness in the region. As the chart below indicates, Garner households have the lowest cost for services in Wake County even after the tax increase. While Garner’s tax rate is higher than those of many peer jurisdictions, our town’s property tax includes annual solid waste fees, which account for nearly 6 cents. In addition, the Town does not charge an annual storm water fee.
Funding generated from the tax increase enabled the Town to fund five positions and additional operating requirements necessitated primarily by continued growth. It also allowed for various items outside of the Town’s control to be funded such as increased retirement contribution rates and higher solid waste costs. Finally, the additional revenue will allow the Town to continue to provide unique services such as the special spring and fall unprepared trash and yard waste pickups, which cost approximately $200,000 in FY 2018-2019.