It’s a busy evening in local government, with both the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners and Asheville City Council meeting May 28 to discuss their budgets.
After much discussion, projections of potential fiscal disaster, and speculation about the next legislation to issue forth from Raleigh, the city of Asheville’s budget is finally unveiled at tonight’s Asheville City Council meeting.
Buncombe County Manager Wanda Greene is recommending commissioners approve a big tax hike to balance the budget.
While noting that much of its fate remains in the hands of the state legislature, at a special meeting this morning Asheville City Council gave staff the go-ahead to start drafting a budget based on a plan that calls for a 1 cent property tax increase and assumes the city and county may consolidate their parks and recreation operations by January.
Tonight, Asheville City Council discussed a possible tax hike to help offset some financial impacts that pending state legislation could have on the current budget crunch, and Mayor Terry Bellamy said she’d vote to sue the state if it went through with a proposal to forcibly transfer the city’s water system to the Metropolitan Sewerage District. Council also approved a Tunnel Road commercial development anchored by a Whole Foods.
Unlike the last budget crunch town hall, tonight’s Asheville City Council forum in South Asheville was less a public comment marathon and more of a brainstorming session. After breaking into small groups, the roughly 40 residents who attended endorsed a property tax increase, along with some cuts and some suggestions of their own, to close Asheville’s budget gap.
Dealing with lower property values and increased funding requests and mandates, Buncombe County faces a tough picture as it prepares its budget for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.
To hear Asheville City Council and city staff tell it, a manageable budget gap is now a potential crisis, thanks to proposed state legislation affecting areas from the water system to business licenses. To close the $5.9 million gap, staff have proposed sharp cuts in everything from public safety to transit to parks and recreation. At a special town hall meeting today, city residents exhorted Council against certain cuts and criticized state legislators (and occasionally the city too).
A tax revaluation, rising expenses, and a barrage of state legislation are all creating a chaotic budget year for the city of Asheville. This afternoon, Asheville City Council and city staff will discuss the issues and invite the public’s input at a special 2 p.m. town hall meeting in the U.S. Cellular Center banquet hall.
Asheville City Council got glimpses of a variety of issues facing the city, including finances and state legislation. It also approved rules that make expansions and renovations of one-story buildings in downtown easier.
I enthusiastically support Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education in our schools, but there are many issues with putting it in the location recommended by the Buncombe County school board. The school will serve only 6 percent (400) of our high school students. Why not build STEM Learning Centers in our six comprehensive high […]
At a Finance Committee meeting today, city staff told Asheville City Council members that despite an increase in property values, the city still faces many of the recurring budget challenges. At its regular meeting, Council approved a controversial drive-thru development and larger signs for Biltmore Park Town Square.
Some of the biggest news in city government this week isn’t happening at Asheville City Council’s formal meeting, but at a presentation to the Finance Committee at 2 p.m. this afternoon. There, staff will lay out the effects of rising property values in the city, and the details of Council’s challenges will become more clear.
By the end of the month, every Buncombe County property owner should receive a notice in the mail from the Tax Office indicating the new value of their property for tax purposes. In this video, Buncombe County Public Relations Director Kathy Hughes discusses how those values are determined and what property owners should expect with Tax Director Gary Roberts.
The deadline to pay Buncombe County property taxes is January 7. After that, a 2 percent interest rate will be added to any unpaid balance on a tax bill and three-quarters of a percent will be added for each month that follows.
Republican Rep. Patrick McHenry, whose 10th District includes most of Asheville, voted against a measure to stave off a series of steep tax hikes and spending cuts. Outgoing 11th District Democrat Rep. Heath Shuler voted in favor.
The United Way, N.C. Budget and Tax Center and other organizations teamed up Dec. 11 to host a community forum on the economy, state budget, and tax modernization. Here’s a look at the forum via Tweets and photos from attendees, rounded up using Storify.
It appears that our governmental organizations within North Carolina have decided that they must become a provider to the wealthy at the expense of the average citizen. It appears that more and more governmental units are abandoning their central role of protector of our citizens. We have more and more governmental units at all levels […]
Today the city of Asheville released a list of public hearings scheduled for the Sept. 25 Asheville City Council meeting. It notes that a decision on a Business Improvement District for downtown could be delayed until Oct. 9. The interim BID Board has requested the change, as Vice Mayor Esther Manheimer will be absent that night.
Economic incentives, property reappraisal, longevity pay and more are on the Aug. 7 meeting agenda of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners.
The city administrators are striving to create a business improvement district, or BID program. The defined area will include all the businesses and every property owner in that district. Instead of having everyone included in the defined area having a vote, they will subdivide into smaller districts. Therefore, many residents in a subdistrict will be […]