Navasota residents should get ready to paying small increases in several different areas next year.
City Manager Brad Stafford laid out the basic breakdown of next fiscal year’s budget to City Council this last week, reporting a 1% increase in water and natural gas and a 4% increase for garbage pick-up and a $5 increase to street and drainage fees to help pay for more street projects.
In a letter written to Council, Stafford detailed just how hard the city has been affected by the recent downturn in the oil and gas industry; depriving it of half of the revenues it had expected. But on the upside, he added, sales tax revenues in Navasota have been on the rise with recent new home developments.
After approving the budget in its first reading, Councilman Bernie Gessner complained that the archaic language used in the City’s new property tax proposal exaggerates how much property taxes are actually rising. Instead of a seven-point-five-three percent increase, Gessner claims that by his math, it’s actually less than a 1% increase.
But even after his complaints, Gessner eventually joined with the rest of council, sans an absent Councilman Geoff Horn, in approving the first reading of the proposed new property tax rate.