Home Carroll County Carroll County FY25 Proposed Budget Released: Things to know about this budget

Carroll County FY25 Proposed Budget Released: Things to know about this budget

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On Friday April 26th Carroll County Government published the FY25 Proposed Budget on their website to the public. You can find the document on this PAGE. The full document is 148 pages and there is a lot of information to read through to learn about what has been proposed. There are two items I will focus on for this article: Tax Increases and General Fund Expenses.

Tax Increases:

On page 15 of the PDF: “The Commissioners, to partially fund these initiatives, are proposing increases in the County’s Recordation and Property Taxes. Beginning July 1, 2024, Recordation Tax will increase from $5.00/$500 to $6.50/$500, generating approximately $4.2 million per year, and Property Tax will increase from $1.018/100 to $1.038/100, generating approximately $4.8 million per year.”

What is not mentioned: Three of the Commissioner voted to increase the tax rates in the proposed budget (Kiler, Vigliotti and Rothstein). Two Commissioners voted against this tax increase (Guerin and Gordon).

As you can see the Commissioners did not have a “Supermajority” (4 votes) in order to raise the taxes in this proposal. The reason they were able to do this was because of a (what I am calling) technicality that allows for the raising of taxes without a “Supermajority” as long as they do not exceed the 2011 tax rates. Watch this video for additional details:

The “Supermajority” issue related to tax increases this year has been a bit of a mess for the Commissioners and some would say not handled well or with the level of transparency the community deserves. The Observer does plan additional details on the topic of “Supermajority – does it really exist or is it all for show” in a future article or video.

General Fund Expenses:

If you scroll to page 42 of the PDF you will see General Fund Uses – By Category and you do a comparison of the FY24 budget and the FY25 budget it appears that spending is down slightly (from $542,839,870 to $541,596,020).

What you are not told: While spending is technically lower the actual fact is that spending on departments and services is actually higher by more than $25,000,000 in FY25. Here is a chart for you to review:

What is left out of the chart above is Debt, Transfers and Reserves. This is where “Expenses” in the General Fund is lower (by $26,832,800 from FY24 to FY25). You can see the specifics of this on page 70 of the PDF.

Now these are only two parts of the 140+ page proposed budget for residents to review. No question in my mind that someone within County Government will tell you that it is all more complicated than described in this article. I would not argue that point and would recommend each reader do their own research and ask questions throughout this process.

There are three additional scheduled “Roadshow” presentations of the proposed budget for residents on the calendar:

  • Proposed Budget Roadshow Exploration Commons at 50 East- April 29, 2024
  • Proposed Budget Roadshow Taneytown Library- April 30, 2024
  • Proposed Budget Roadshow Hampstead Library- May 1, 2024

There is also the upcoming Public Hearing on the FY25 Proposed Budget scheduled for May 6, 2024. This would be your opportunity to address the Commissioners and let them know your thoughts about the FY25 proposed budget. You can also email Commissioners your thoughts here:

mguerin@carrollcountymd.gov
erothstein@carrollcountymd.gov
jvigliotti@carrollcountymd.gov
kkiler@carrollcountymd.gov
tgordon@carrollcountymd.gov


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