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Stone Harbor Introduces Budget with 3.4% Increase in Tax Rate

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Stone Harbor Logo

By Vince Conti

STONE HARBOR – Stone Harbor Council introduced the 2023 budget, containing a 3.4% hike in the local purpose tax rate, April 4.
The tax rate moved up one cent from $0.292 to $0.302. Ratables in the borough increased by $14.5 million. The local tax levy is up by $575,000.
The $21.5 million current fund budget is joined by the borough’s dedicated water and sewer utility budget set at $5.6 million for 2023. In both budgets, debt service has increased over 2022 levels. Last year, Stone Harbor had the highest percentage of current fund revenue going to debt service among the county municipalities.
Over the last three years, there has been discussion in council meetings concerning the need to develop alternative sources of revenue. The 2023 budget shows no change in the identification of nontaxation sources of revenue. Local revenue from sources other than taxes did not increase from 2022.
One thing that did change was an increased use of surplus funds to balance the budget. In 2022, the borough used 52% of its available surplus in the budget. In 2023, the surplus used represents 64% of the available balance.
The borough will hold a public hearing on the budget April 18 when there will also be a vote on adoption.

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