Balancing Act

To approve budget, County raises taxes, dips into general fund

Port Isabel-South Padre Press

After months of deliberation, the Cameron County Commissioners’ Court approved a tax increase and the appropriation of monies from the general fund in order to balance its 2017-2018 fiscal budget. Property taxes will be increased by just over three-tenths of a cent per $100 valuation, while approximately $316,000 from the general fund balance will be utilized to meet the County’s operating expenses.

“The approved budget sets $88.4 million for general fund operations, $16.3 million for the International Bridge System operations, $9 million for the Parks System and $12 million for Road and Bridge operations,” Cameron County Judge Eddie Treviño, Jr. said via a statement released earlier this week.

“At the beginning of this process we had a deficit of close to $5 million,” the judge said.

The Court approved the budget and tax rate after one final public hearing Tuesday, Sept. 19, where they heard requests for additional funding from several latecomers. The Court has met weekly since late July in order to hammer out its funding needs, hearing pleas from staff at the County animal shelter, veterans’ affairs office, maintenance department, various constables’ and justice of the peace offices, and more.

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