Proposal Keeps Property Tax Rate Flat
Rockville, Maryland, Feb. 22 – Rockville’s Mayor and Council continue deliberations in March with a public hearing and work session focused on the Fiscal Year 2020 budget.
City Manager Rob DiSpirito is scheduled to present the Mayor and Council with a FY 2020 budget proposal during their meeting on Monday, Feb. 25. Find the proposed budget at www.rockvillemd.gov/budget and details with the Feb. 25 meeting listing at www.rockvillemd.gov/AgendaCenter.
The budget, which covers the fiscal year that begins July 1, is scheduled for adoption by the Mayor and Council on Monday, May 6.
The proposed FY 2020 operating budget of $138.5 million is an increase of 1.7 percent over the total operating budget for FY 2019. The general fund budget, which supports the largest portion of the operating budget, is $84.2 million, a 2.2 percent increase.
The city’s current real property tax rate of $0.292 per $100 of assessed valuation would remain the same for FY20. All residential and commercial property owners pay this tax.
Property tax, the city's largest source of general fund revenue, is estimated to increase by 1.8 percent from FY19, to $43.5 million, due to higher property assessments, new properties on the tax roll and an increase in personal property tax revenue consistent with recent trends. Income tax, the city's second largest single source of general fund revenue, is estimated to increase by 1.1 percent, to $14.2 million.
The proposed FY 2020-FY 2024 Capital Improvements Program, the five-year plan for funding new construction and infrastructure maintenance, includes $31.7 million in new funding, combined with a carryover of $54.3 million to support 42 projects during the fiscal year. The proposed budget includes funding for two newly funded projects:
- Renovations to the Rockville Swim and Fitness Center’s outdoor recreation pool, tot pool, sprayground, outdoor pool filter room, overhead pool lights and deck areas, and replacement of the water slide tower and flume. The FY20 funding is for concept design only.
- Street and sidewalk improvements in the Stonestreet Avenue corridor near the Rockville Metro Station, including traffic signal reconstruction at South Stonestreet Avenue and Park Road, and improvements to North Stonestreet between Park Road and Lincoln Avenue. The FY20 funding is for design and right-of-way acquisition.
Rockville operates six enterprise funds, four of which are utility funds. They function like a private business, with costs fully recovered through user charges. The utility funds are the water fund, the sewer fund, the refuse fund and the stormwater management fund. Two of these funds – water and sewer – include rate increases for FY20 that were approved last year. These rate increases are necessary to repair and replace aging water and sewer pipes and other infrastructure vital to providing these services, and for required payments to the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission related to a regional wastewater treatment plant.
For the city’s water and sewer customers, water rates for a residential property with a 3/4-inch meter and 16,000 gallons of usage will increase approximately 5.4 percent. Sewer rates for the same property will increase 6.9 percent. Recycling and trash service will remain at $445 per household per year. The stormwater management rate will remain at $132 per year. For tables illustrating the annual financial impact of changes to the city’s fees and charges for two sample households, see page 23 of the proposed budget at www.rockvillemd.gov/budget.
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Budget Calendar at a Glance
- Monday, March 4: Public hearing.
- Monday, March 18: Mayor and Council work session.
- Monday, April 1: Public hearing and Mayor and Council work session.
- Friday, April 5: Public record closes.
- Monday, April 29: Mayor and Council work session (if needed).
- Monday, May 6: Budget adoption.
Meetings are broadcast live on channel 11 on county cable systems, livestreamed at www.rockvillemd.gov/rockville11 and available a day after the meeting at www.rockvillemd.gov/videoondemand.
For more information, or for members of the media interested in arranging an interview with staff from the city's Finance Department, please call 240-314-8105.
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Director of Communication