Gaston County Approves Budget, Lowers Property Tax Rate
GASTONIA, N.C. – In a unanimous vote Tuesday evening, the Gaston County Board of Commissioners approved the County’s FY21 budget, which provides a one-cent decrease in property taxes for residents.
It drops the county’s property tax rate to 83 cents for every $100 of valued property – the lowest rate since 2001. When looked at per resident, Gaston County spends the second least of the top 10 most populous North Carolina counties – meaning residents get some of the best bang for their buck from county services.
The budget also achieves several other significant goals in what is the first budget presented to the board by Dr. Kim Eagle.
- Provides mid-year merit raises for employees
- Does not furlough or layoff any employees
- A more than $6 million decrease in planned general fund expenditures to account for the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 crisis
- No delay in implementation of CARE Plan capital projects
- Reduces the amount of fund balance used to balance the budget
“No manager would want their first budget to be under the shadow of COVID-19,” Eagle said. “But it was the hand we were dealt. And our budget team worked countless hours to present the board with a budget that meets my goals and will serve our citizens well.”
The Board of Commissioners commended Dr. Eagle for a thorough and detailed budget presentation, and was encouraged by the diligence of staff to present a lean budget that keeps the same level of service to the community while taking care of employees who have performed admirably under trying circumstances.
The goal for the county and its board is to pass a budget next year that does not spend any money from its fund balance – so long as the economy makes an appropriate recovery from the recession caused by COVID-19.