James City County Administrator Bryan J. Hill released his proposed Fiscal Year 2016 budget of $187,750,000 on April 1. The proposed budget is 12 percent over the adopted second year of the FY15/16 biennial budget plan approved by the Board of Supervisors in May 2014. The proposal contains an 8.2 cent real estate tax increase per $100 of assessed value. The $9 million increase supports five strategic initiatives designed to move the County forward by focusing on water supply, stormwater facilities, schools, economic development and County appearance which includes aging infrastructure and overdue capital maintenance. The proposed budget also includes replenishing the debt reserve fund to help maintain the County’s fiscal health. Excluding the proposed tax increase, County revenue is expected to remain mostly flat.
Last year, as part of the two year budgeting process, the Board of Supervisors adopted a FY2016 Plan of $178,519,600. Without the 8.2 cent tax increase, the FY2016 budget would be $178,730,000, an approximate $200,000 increase.
The 8.2 cent tax increase is strategically divided among five initiatives:
• Stormwater – $1.88 million: maintenance and repair of stormwater facilities, restoring the Neighborhood Drainage program and pollution monitoring. Two positons will be added if funded.
• Schools – $3.2 million: replacement of 10 school buses, Clara Byrd Baker Elementary refurbishments and other school roof replacements.
• Economic Development – $52,000: conduct transportation study to open potential business property.
• County Appearance – $2.38 million: increase VDOT corridor mowing and replace or upgrade aging infrastructure and facilities.
• Fiscal Health – $1.5 million: replenish Capital reserve fund and halt draw down.
In addition, the James City Service Authority (JCSA) is proposing a new rate structure for FY2016. Tier one water service will drop to $2.47 per 1,000 gallons; tiers two and three will increase to $4.93 and $11.59 respectively. The majority of residential customers will have a fixed quarterly meter charge of $7.22 for water and $5.66 for sewer.
The County’s proposed FY2016 budget funds the WJCC Schools operations at $82,417,697, a two percent increase over FY2015. The budget allocation of $83,417,697 includes replacement buses.
The FY2016 Plan for County personnel expenses was $45.3 million and remains at that funding level. The personnel budget adds three new Police Sergeants and two Parks and Recreation positions, a sliding scale pay-for-performance compensation increase of three percent and the addition of new consumer driven health insurance plans to compliment the County’s traditional health plans. The compensation proposals are funded by redirecting FY2016 money set aside for a planned compensation and health insurance increase, aggressive health insurance cost negotiations and reallocated turnover savings.
After a series of work sessions and community meetings, the Board of Supervisors will vote on the proposed FY2016 County budget and JCSA budget at the April 28 regular meeting. Once adopted, the budget will cover July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016. Opportunities for citizen input are as follows:
Community meetings by voting districts, each at 6:30 p.m.
April 2 – Roberts District - Government Center Board Room, 101-F Mounts Bay Rd.
April 6 – Berkeley District - Government Center Board Room, 101-F Mounts Bay Rd.
April 13 – Stonehouse District - James City County Library, 7770 Croaker Rd.
April 16 – Powhatan District - JCC Recreation Center, 5301 Longhill Rd.
April 23 - Jamestown District - JCC Recreation Center, 5301 Longhill Rd.
April 14 – Public hearings on proposed County budget and JCSA budget, 7 p.m. Board of Supervisors regular meeting.
The Board of Supervisors will hold budget work sessions at 4 p.m. on April 15, 20 and 22 in the Board’s work session room at 101-F Mounts Bay Rd. Although there are no opportunities for public comment during work sessions, they can be viewed on JCC TV Cox Cable channel 48, and streamed live and on demand at jamescitycountyva.gov. The proposed FY2016 budget can be viewed and downloaded at jamescitycountyva.gov/budget and copies are available for reading at public libraries and the County’s Satellite Services Office, 3127 Forge Rd., Toano.
Media Contact: Jody Puckett, Communications Director