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Hawkins City Council

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Hawkins tax rate: 47.99 cents Budget at $1.886 million
By JOHN SPARKS

 Meeting in special session, Monday, September 10, the Hawkins City Council set the tax rate for the '07-'08 fiscal year at 47.99 cents, down 1.9 cents from '06-'07 rate of 49.91 cents.

After several workshops over the past three weeks, the council arrived at a budget that proposes $1,886,512.10 in spending for fiscal 2008. The proposed spending will require a draw of $355,000 on the City of Hawkins reserve fund. According to figures used in the workshop sessions, the reserve fund from the current budget year will total approximately $1.3 million.

Council members debated a proposal by Mayor Sam Bradley to borrow $330,000 from commercial lenders to fund the proposed repainting and repair work on the city's water tower and water storage tanks. Bradley suggested interest rates quoted to him by two banks would be 5.352-to-5.5 percent on such a loan. All agreed the work must proceed, but Councilmen Dwayne Hickey, Tom Parker and John Green argued for using the reserve funds rather than borrowing the money. Council voted to use reserve funds.

In spite of the tax rate reduction of approximately four percent, the '08 property tax rate will generate more revenue for the city than was raised with the higher rate in '07. This is due to new property additions and higher appraisals on properties within the city.

Spending by department in the '08 budget is allocated as follows:
Administration - $237,577.20
Fire Department - $85,109.40
Police Department - $174,573,00
Library - $50,556.00
Street Department - $99,905.00
Park Department - $10,000
Municipal Court - $11,689.00
Nutrition - $22,662.50
Fire Marshall - $8,100.00
Water Department - $588,285.00
Sewer Department - $602,385.00

The budget adopted includes a state/federal grant of $250,000 dedicated to funding for a sewer pipe improvement program. The selection/rating process which identified Hawkins as a recipient in the program is in dispute by federal and state authorities. But the council is moving forward with preparations for the improvement project which involves lining certain sewer lines in the near downtown area.

Revenues are projected at the following levels from various sources:
Property Taxes - $448,000
Sales Taxes - $140,000
Water/Sewer - $789,165
Fines - $19,800
Franchises - $32,500
Fire Protection - $31,514
CD Interest - $33,000
Various fees, permits & miscellaneous - $10,733

The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Hawkins City Council is scheduled for Monday, October 15 at 6 p.m. A special meeting of the council can be called with 72 hours public notice.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 April 2009 15:11  

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