Mayor Richard H. Garcia and the Edinburg City Council have instructed City staff to include a property tax rate decrease in the upcoming 2017-2018 Fiscal Year Budget. The Council discussed the reduction at the May 16, regularly scheduled meeting held at City Hall.

The current tax rate is 63.5 (63 ½) cents per $100 assessed valuation. It has remained unchanged for the past 22 years in a row but could change when the budget is approved later this year.

Mayor Pro Tem J.R. Betancourt, who placed the item on the agenda, says the City has fared well and should give back to the community.

“I have instructed the City Manager to start the 2017-2018 Budget process with a three (3) cents reduction in the tax rate. There’s about eight assets that have not been included in this tax roll that will increase our revenue in our general fund. I think it’s a token of all of us here to give back to the citizens of Edinburg who have entrusted us in being a steward of their tax dollars all these years.”

Mayor Pro Tem Betancourt says there are areas where staff can trim here and there to make the decrease happen.

As per Senate Bill 18, approved by 79th Texas Legislature, the City Council must vote to place the proposal to adopt the decrease on the agenda at a future meeting as an action item.

Determining the tax rate each year is an integral part of the budgeting process as it will impact the required debt service payments and the approved operating expenditures for the fiscal year.

If the decrease is approved, staff will comply with the state’s required public hearing and publications.