The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners met Tuesday, May 21. Here are some highlights of the meeting.
Manager’s Recommended Budget
Interim Mecklenburg County Manager Bobbie Shields recommended a $1,679,737,085 budget for FY14 that would increase the County’s property tax rate by 2.5 cents in order to sustain current services while bolstering education funding. The recommended budget is 17.2 percent more than the current year’s adopted budget, an increase of $247.0 million.
The 2.5 cent tax increase would result in a property tax bill $50 higher for a $200,000 home.
The Recommended Budget includes County services funding of $429.2 million, which is a net increase of $8.7 million (or 2.0 percent) after County staff identified $21.7 million in efficiencies and redirection of current year funds. The budget includes CMS operating funding of $361.4 million, an increase of $21.3 million (or 6.3 percent) not including debt service costs associated with CMS. The Recommended Budget includes CPCC funding of $30.1 million, which is an increase of $3 million (11.2 percent).
Key budget dates include the budget public hearing on May 30, Board straw votes June 11 & 12 and budget adoption at the June 18, 2013 meeting. The Fiscal Year 2013-2014 budget will cover July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014. View all budget documents.
Second Harvest Food Bank
The Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina presented a plan to the Board that would nearly double the size of its facility on Spratt Street in Charlotte. The Food Bank plans to secure private funding for construction of an $8 million addition to its current facility. The Food Bank is not asking for County Money for the project but is asking the City and County to conduct a land swap for the property now owned by the City where the addition would be constructed.
Health Department Fee Schedule
Health Director Dr. Wynn Mabry presented to the Board the fee schedule for health services proposed for FY14. Fees are the same as those currently being used in the Health Department under the management of Carolinas HealthCare System. Effective July 1 Mecklenburg County staff will assume direct responsibility for the management of Mecklenburg County Health Department services. The Board of County Commissioners will be asked to approve the FY14 Health Department Fee Schedule during the budget adoption process in June.
Romare Bearden Park Smoke-Free
The Board approved a Park and Recreation Department staff request of a policy to make Romare Bearden Park tobacco free. The park is designed to host events such as concerts and festivals, and use of tobacco products will negatively impact visitors' enjoyment and health. A tobacco-free policy also assists in reducing litter and the promotion of parks as healthy environments for all park patrons.
CMS Security Capital Project
The Board approved a Capital Project Ordinance in the amount of $19,325,000 to allow Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools to improve security. At its April 16, 2013 meeting, the Board received a report from CMS on a series of security upgrades at local schools. These upgrades were developed by a team that included CMS leadership staff, law enforcement and CMS information technology staff. The ordinance provides authorization for funding these items as part of the FY2014 capital program.