The City of Boerne’s budget for fiscal year 2024 was approved by City Council at the September 12 meeting.
A public hearing for the proposed budget and the tax rate was held during the meeting. Both were approved by council as follows:
- Budget approved in 5-0 vote.
- Tax rate approved in 5-0 vote.
Budget Overview and Highlights
The overall budget is $141 million and includes a 2.56 cent increase in the overall property tax rate from $0.4510 per $100 valuation to $0.4766 to accommodate the $36 million bond package approved by voters in 2022.
The approved tax rate includes a reduction of 3.24 cents per $100 valuation of the maintenance and operations rate. This decrease means the increase in overall tax rate is limited to the voter-approved bond program.
“This recommendation comes after many months of dedication and hard work by the mayor, City Council, and City staff to maximize investment in infrastructure and other key initiatives while balancing cost pressures of the current economy and job market,” City Manager Ben Thatcher said. “The hard work by staff to trim budgets resulted in the cost savings to the maintenance and operations rate, which we are very proud of.”
The budget focuses on the following:
- Investments in 2022 bond projects
- Public safety enhancements
- Mobility and infrastructure improvements
- High performance management and commitment to excellence
- Maintaining all service levels
One of the primary priorities of the City’s tax rate strategy for FY 2024 is to advance projects from the $36 million bond package approved by voters in November 2022. The City will split the debt issuance over two years, including $18 million in FY 2024 and $18 million in FY 2025.
The quality-of-life bond package, when approved by voters in 2022, included an estimated potential impact of up to 5.8 cents on the property tax rate based on the value of the average home at the time.
With the increase in average home valuation, the impact of the bond package on the tax rate will only be 2.56 cents in FY 2024 and 0 cents in FY 2025.
The following voter-approved bond projects will be funded by the issuance of $18 million debt included in the FY 2024 budget. The remainder of the projects and project phases will be funded in the FY 2025 budget.
- Adler Road (Prop A)
- Completion of Design
- Preparation of Bid
- Finalization of Project Timeline
- Other Street Projects (Prop A)
- W. Blanco Road
- Shooting Club Road
- W. Kronkosky Street
- Parkway Drive
- Northside Community Park (Prop B)
- Completion of Preliminary Designs
- Construction Begins
Other Capital Infrastructure Projects
City leadership has made a concerted effort to increase the percentage of infrastructure investment over the past several years, which is continued in this year’s budget.
In addition to the bond projects listed above, the proposed FY 2024 budget also includes funding for $23 million in other strategic capital infrastructure projects that champion environmental responsibility, community charm, and safety and security. These include:
- $10 Million in Utilities Investments
- $3 Million in Drainage Projects
- $2.3 Million in Parks Projects
- $850K in Sidewalk Improvements
- $750K in Street Maintenance Programs
Public Safety Investments
For FY 2024, the City budget has invested in five new public safety positions across three departments.
- The Boerne Police Department will add one additional School Resource Officer to ensure each Boerne ISD campus is staffed with a dedicated officer. The school district and the City share in the costs associated with SROs.
- The Boerne Fire Department will add three additional firefighters. The proposed budget also includes $2.8 million for the design of Fire Station No. 2, which will be built on Esperanza Boulevard to improve response times for calls to the east side of the department’s service area. Construction of the new fire station is not included in the FY 2024 budget. These investments are part of an effort to achieve the master plan objective to continually evaluate opportunities to better meet national fire service response and staffing standards. The City has also applied for a SAFR grant that would fully or partially offset the costs of the additional firefighter positions.
- Animal Care Services will add one additional animal control officer in response to the growing number of calls for service to the department.
Maintain Employer of Choice Status
For FY 2024, the City remains committed to investing in a strong culture to retain and attract new employees to ensure the City of Boerne continues to be an employer of choice. This includes investments in:
- Competitive compensation
- COLA and merit pay increases
- Paid parental leave benefit
Explore the Budget
For a more in depth look at the City of Boerne’s FY 2024 budget, visit the budget website. There you can learn more about funding, debt performance, goals, and strategic plans. The Fiscal Year 2024 begins Oct. 1, 2023, and ends Sept. 30, 2024.
Notice of Public Hearing on Proposed Budget
Notice of Public Hearing on 2023 Tax Rates