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Sunday, April 21, 2024

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Stone Harbor Introduces Budget with Tax Rate Increase

Stone Harbor Logo
Stone Harbor Logo

By Vince Conti

STONE HARBOR – Stone Harbor Council introduced the 2023 municipal budget March 21 with a 3.4% increase in the local purpose tax rate.  

The current fund budget for the coming year stands at $21.3 million, up $1.5 million from 2022. The tax rate went up by 1 cent per $100 of assessed value, moving from $0.292 to $0.302. 

The increase in spending includes an $845,433 hike in debt service. Other areas of increase include a $215,000 rise in pension costs, $177,000 increase in employee health care premiums, and the need to adjust for $85,000 in Covid relief dollars used in the 2022 budget, but no longer available for 2023. 

The Water and Sewer Utility budget increased from $5 million in 2022 to $5.6 million in 2023. The largest area of year-to-year increase in spending was for debt service, which rose from $2.12 million to $2.34 million. 

$2.7 million of the current fund surplus was used in the budget, representing just under two-thirds of the total surplus balance. 

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