The Tallahassee City Commission and the Leon County Commission recently held budget workshops related to the 2023 budget process. The workshops are designed to inform elected officials and the public about local government finances and to seek input related to the challenges and opportunities based on the projected revenues and expenses for the upcoming year.
The City of Tallahassee
At the June 8 City Commission workshop officials addressed the projected general fund deficit of approximately $4 million in fiscal year 2023 (FY23). The FY23 general fund expenses are estimated to be $183.9 million with $179.9 in revenues. The $4 million deficit is driven by a $7.5 million increase in personnel costs.
In order to address deficit, staff proposed a 10% reduction ($445,300) in road resurfacing expenditures and a 20% reduction ($120,400) in sidewalk capital expenditures in FY23.
Staff also estimated that property tax revenue will be approximately $1.92 million over the prior estimate due to the increase in property values. In addition, staff recommended a delay in filling existing vacancies which will reduce budgeted personnel costs by approximately $540,275.
With these items, staff estimated the FY23 deficit would be reduced to approximately $619,000.
There were no binding votes taken by the city commission at the workshop. Final decisions will be made in the coming months.
At the Leon County workshop, the Board of County Commissioners unanimously voted to balance the County’s preliminary budget without raising the millage rate. The proposed FY23 budget totals $316.2 million which is an increase of 7.5% from last year’s budget.
FY23 revenues are expected to increase by $22 million, with $14.3 million coming from an increase in property tax revenues. Preliminary property values provided by the Property Appraiser’s Office on June 1 indicate property values will increase by 9.24%.
The change in FY23 expenses totals $22.1 million with “Sheriff Personnel and Operating Expenses” increasing by $7,695,149. This increase includes the implementation of a new compensation plan to be completed over the next two fiscal years. The pay plan will accomplish competitive pay adjustments between Detention and Law Enforcement as well as increase the starting pay for sworn staff to $50,000. The estimated cost to implement part one of the pay plan and other personnel related increases (on-call pay, healthcare, retirement, work comp, etc.) in FY 2023 is $4.8 million.
In addition, the Sheriff’s contractual services increased over $1.8 million largely due to the increased cost of providing inmate medical, dental, and mental health services.
Other increases in expenses include “County Government Personnel Costs” up by $3,629,768 and Fuel and Vehicle Repair” up by $1,002,880.