75 percent of the over $770 million proposed Chesterfield County budget would go toward public schools and public safety.
CHESTERFIELD (WRIC) - Chesterfield County unveils its proposed budget and most of the money will go toward schools and law enforcement.
While residents could be paying more in taxes and fees, the county is also proposing spending more on teachers and police officers. Overall they believe it's a great proposal considering the challenges the county faces.
75 percent of the over $770 million proposed Chesterfield County budget would go toward public schools and public safety. The county is proposing to hire 100 new teachers to help reduce class size and meet growing demand. The proposal also calls for increasing staffing for public safety such as police officers and sheriffs.
"We want to make sure again, just a solid education system a safe community," Allan Carmody, of the Department of Budget and Management.
But the proposal also calls for increasing real estate taxes by 3 cents to help pay for more than $300 million in improvements to schools and emergency communication approved by voters in a referendum last November. Currently the rate is 95 cents per $100 of assessed value.
If you own a $200,000 home you currently pay $1,900 a year in property taxes, the proposal would add $60 to your total bill - though officials say the rate is still among the lowest in the state.
"[The] lowest locally taxed large jurisdiction in the state of Virginia," Carmody says.
To pay for roads, the county is proposing a $10 increase to vehicle registration fees, expected to generate $3.5 million toward road improvements. Officials say they're hoping to hear from the public about the proposal.