Editorial

5/30/2014

Budget without tax hikes is good news

Property owners in Glynn County are no doubt supportive and appreciative of the county's proposed budget for the new fiscal year, and for good reason. It uses accrued, unspent revenue to balance projected expenditures, including capital improvements, for the 52 weeks that will follow July 1.

The absence of a tax increase to pay for fiscal year 2015 is indeed good news. That's particularly true for property owners in the city, who will, with what's being proposed as of now, face a millage rate hike if the City Commission goes along with the new budget proposed by City Manager Bill Weeks and other members of the administrative staff.

Anytime government can balance its budget without further prevailing upon taxpayers is a plus for the thousands of individuals and families who work and live in this community and for the economy in general. It protects the amount of disposable income each has after paying or preparing for local, state and federal taxes. That's a lot of government to support. It also leaves them more to spend on other necessities, like new clothes or home improvements, and on leisure items, like boats and a host of recreational activities and toys.

Cutting costs or allowing community growth to catch up with nonessential but perhaps useful financial needs of government is always the preferred, if not indeed the better, option. It spreads out the burden, putting it on more shoulders rather than increasing the load carried by existing property owners and businesses.

Glynn County is proposing a no-tax increase budget even though some new costs are on its list of essential expenditures for fiscal year 2015 which will require more revenue. That includes the additional personnel that will be needed by the sheriff when the community opens the new, larger jail on U.S. 341 this summer.

Hopefully the board of education will be able to follow this lead and City Hall will take another look at what it's proposing and offer its taxpayers a 12-month spending plan that does not require a millage rate increase.