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Amended Monterey Budget Includes 3-Cent Tax Increase

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Amended Monterey Budget Includes 3-Cent Tax Increase

The town of Monterey’s amended budget includes a three-cent property tax increase, down from a 14-cent increase when a Wednesday work session began.

Alderman Alex Garcia said the board went through the budget line-by-line and cut items when possible in order to whittle down the increase. He said the town has not had a property tax increase in well over 10 years. Garcia said that maybe the city should have increased the tax earlier to prevent the need for such a significant hike.

“Nobody’s ever excited to hear a tax increase,” Garcia said. “But as a board, we worked hard to be a minimal tax increase.”

Among the biggest budget changes, putting hotel-motel tax revenue to work in the cultural department. Garcia said since this money is reserved for tourism, the board was able to cut out a chunk of the marketing budget to help make a minimal tax increase possible.

Garcia said the board also cut some purchases that department heads had wanted.

As for increasing revenue, Garcia said he’s hopeful new investment in infrastructure will increase those possibilities.

“We’ve got a couple of good things coming in, so I think, going forward, we’re not going to be as big as those other towns, but going forward, I think we’ll be able to be a little bit better, well-off, with a sales tax,” Garcia said. “And the five-year plan in Monterey is looking very, very positive.”

Garcia said the amended version of the budget will be on the agenda for a second reading at the board’s May 6 meeting.


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