PTC OK’s $28 million budget

Tue, 08/07/2007 - 4:39pm
By: John Munford

Means tax increase for most, but city adds 6 firefighters and 3 cops

Peachtree City officials adopted the city’s 2007-2008 budget Thursday night, and with it comes a property tax increase for most city property owners.

Council declined to roll back the millage rate used to calculate property taxes, so the tax rate by itself will remain the same. However, those whose property assessments went up this year will pay more in property taxes. And that’s most properties in the city.

The $28.36 million budget includes six new firefighters and three new police officers in addition to an accountant and a one-year contract for a full-time assistant city planner, which is upgraded from a part-time role.

Council will spend down the city’s cash reserves, using $852,000 to balance the budget, which will still leave the city with a healthy cash reserve on hand for emergencies, officials have said.

The general fund budget represents a 9.25 percent increase from last year.

The six new firefighters will add two firefighters per shift, and the city is hopeful the new staffing will allow the city’s ISO fire insurance rating to be dropped, which would result in homeowner’s insurance savings for residents.

The three new police positions are being added to patrol the city’s cart paths, but Police Chief James Murray said he won’t be able to assign officers to that beat until his department gets up to a full staffing level.

Councilman Steve Boone said it does cost money to improve police and fire services, and he also liked the idea of hiring another person in the financial department.

Boone said after the meeting that he was concerned about the tax increase being proposed by the Fayette County Commission, which could hurt older residents and those living on fixed incomes.

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