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Per City Charter, the proposed City of Coppell Fiscal Year 2020-2021 budget was filed with the City Secretary on August 5. The proposed budget includes a tax rate of $0.58400 per $100 valuation, which is the same rate the City of Coppell levied last year. As a result of the unexpected, Coronavirus-related delays, this proposed budget and tax rate are based on the most current information available, the certified estimated property values. This proposed budget and tax rate are not based on final values, and they will be adjusted once certified values are made available to the City.
As part of Senate Bill 2, Texas municipalities are required to present additional tax rate information to the public. The City is presenting this information for transparency purposes, but only the proposed rate will be presented to City Council for approval.
This year, the City has presented three different tax rates: the City's proposed rate, the no new revenue rate, and the voter approval rate. All of these rates are based on the most current information we have – the certified estimated property values.
The proposed tax rate, $0.58400 per $100 valuation, is the rate that the City has determined will raise the necessary revenue to fund public safety, public works and quality of life projects that residents desire. This is the rate that the City plans to present to City Council for approval.
The no new revenue rate, which has historically been referred to as the effective rate, is the property tax rate that the city would need to set to not generate any additional revenue from the same property over the previous year. Using the most current information available, the certified estimated property values, the City of Coppell's no new revenue rate has been published as $0.638729 per $100 valuation.
Finally, the voter approval rate, which was published as $0.654106 per $100 valuation, represents the tax rate at which City Council would need to call an election to allow for voter approval. Under Senate Bill 2, the City Council must call an election if the proposed tax rate generates more than a 3.5% increase in revenue from existing property, not including new growth. The voter approval rate was also calculated using certified estimated values, not final numbers.
View the Truth in Taxation Notice.
Please note, the budget schedule has been extended due to COVID-19 related delays and closures.
The City began planning for the loss of sales tax revenue as a result of Rule 3.334, which has to do with the allocation of sales tax revenue in the State of Texas, when it was proposed by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts in December 2019. While planning for the impact of Rule 3.334 in late 2019, City departments analyzed their budgeted line by line to identify expenditure reductions. The City also immediately instituted a hiring freeze and capital reductions. In total, the City was able to identify approximately $5.6 million in expenditure reductions. Thus, the City had identified and implemented reductions to expenditures prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Further, the City analyzed existing fund balances to determine the best strategy to mitigate the impact of the expected remaining revenue loss. The City identified two fund balances that will be used to cover the revenue reduction that cannot be accounted for through reduced expenditures: funds that City Council had previously set aside in the City's designated fund balance for use should an issue arise, and a fund that Council had previously set up to be used in case of revenue threats. Transfers from the Water/Sewer Fund and allocations from other fund balances are also being used to mitigate revenue reductions.
As a result of early planning, the City of Coppell has been able to account for 99% of the expected $9.2 million revenue loss due to the pandemic through expenditure reductions and fund balance reallocations. The City has been able to maintain continuity of government without drastic changes to necessary staffing levels or further reductions to capital improvement projects.
The City strongly encourages residents to get involved, attend public meetings and provide feedback on the proposed budget.