Ridgeland holding line on taxes for 3 decades
RIDGELAND — Following a three-decades-long trend, no tax increase is planned here, but city employees, including the Mayor and Board of Alderman, can expect three-percent pay raises following budget approval this week.
Mayor Gene F. McGee said he is pleased with the FY 2024 budget and is excited to see it put into effect after Aldermen approved the proposed budget unanimously in a 7-0 vote at Tuesday’s regular city board meeting.
“I think our department heads did a really good job being conservative but ensuring that we continue to offer the high-quality services that make this city so great for our residents and our guests,” McGee said.
Specifically, McGee said he was pleased that city employees would receive a three-percent pay raise.
“You just don't get to do that every year,” McGee said.
The last two budgets have featured five-percent pay raises for city employees.
Ward 1 Alderman Ken Heard noted that he would be exempt from the raise at his request.
City Clerk Paula Tierce presented the proposed budget, which runs at 156 pages, to the Mayor and Board of Aldermen during a public hearing on Aug. 22. The approved FY 2024 budget projects revenues at $29,645,835 and expenditures at $32, 544,751.28.
Tierce noted that these estimates represent conservative forecasts specifically for revenues. She also noted the expected end-of-year general fund balance will be about a $21,205,039 surplus.
This puts the projected percentage of ending balance over total expenditures at 65.16 percent.
The board voted unanimously at the first meeting in September to levy tax millage at 11.27 for the general fund and 8.76 for the debt service fund and a total of 20.03 mills. McGee noted that is the same millage the board has levied for more than 30 years and has been a point of pride for his administration year after year.
McGee noted that the city of Ridgeland has not raised taxes since he has been at the helm since 1989.
The FY 2023 Fiscal Year ends on Sept. 30 and the new year begins on Oct. 1.