Commission discusses property tax rate – San Benito News

Special to the NEWS

The San Benito City Commission will consider lowering the city’s property tax rate by two cents.

The prospect even surprised the mayor who was hesitant to provide a one cent reduction. San Benito Mayor Rick Guerra said earlier that any decrease in property taxes will cost the city tens of thousands of dollars in revenue losses – something San Benito cannot afford right now, he stressed.

Currently, the tax rate stands at 72 cents per every $100 of property. Guerra said a one cent decrease will result in about $85,000 in revenue losses.

A two-cent decrease translates into a decrease of about $170,000.

“I would like to tell the taxpayers to bear with us,” he said. “Nothing is on or off the table at this moment.”

He said the commission has until the end of this month to adopt the proposed budget of nearly $16 million for Fiscal Year 2022-23.

But during Tuesday’s September 6 meeting, the commission was told the rate will decrease by two cents.

Guerra said the city is in dire need on many fronts. With regards to the water plant alone, the city has a debt of about $20 million, adding that the streets are in need in improvements and the need to acquire more heavy equipment, fix lift stations and attracting new businesses.

“We have an aging population,” Guerra said. “We need to create jobs for our workforce.”

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