The Greensboro City Council is scheduled to begin discussing City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba’s recommended 2023-2024 budget, “Going Forward Together,” on Tuesday, May 23.

Unlike most work sessions, this one will be held in the Katie Dorsett Council Chambers and begin at 1 p.m.

Along with the budget, the City Council also plans to discuss the proposed contract to use the old Regency Inn for permanent supportive housing for homeless people.

Jaiyeoba presented “Going Forward Together,” the $749 million budget, at the Tuesday, May 16 City Council meeting, but as is tradition city councilmembers made few comments about the recommended budget.

The recommended budget includes a 4-cent property tax increase to 67.25 cents, and an 8.5 percent increase in water and sewer rates.  There is also a proposed increase in fees for the city parking decks downtown, for commercial solid waste disposal and, no doubt, other proposed fee increases as well.

Mayor Nancy Vaughan and District 3 City Councilmember Zack Matheny have both said that they are opposed to the proposed tax increase.  Both have also said that it appears the majority of the City Council don’t have a problem with the tax increase.

It appears that the 2023-2024 budget, “Going Forward Together,” is destined to be a virtual repeat of the 2022-2023 budget, which passed on a 7-2 vote with Vaughan and then District 3 City Councilmember Justin Outling casting the two no votes.  For the 2022-2023 budget, At-large Councilmember Hugh Holston indicated he was opposed to the enormous tax increase equivalent to 8.69 cents, but in the end Holston voted in favor of the budget and the tax increase.

However, one major difference between the 2022-2023 budget and the 2023-2024 budget is that the 2022-2023 budget doesn’t have a catchy name and the recommended 2023-2024 budget is named “Going Forward Together.”

Judging from the 2022-2023 budget process, the City Council is unlikely to make any major changes to Jaiyeoba’s recommended budget.

In the 2022-2023 budget process, Jaiyeoba did lower the tax increase from the equivalent of an 11.69 increase in the recommended budget by 3 cents to the equivalent of an 8.69 cent increase.

The good news is that last year Jaiyeoba lowered the tax rate by 3 cents and at the same time increased spending in the final budget approved by the City Council.

If Jaiyeoba could work the same magic this year, it seems he could eliminate the 4-cent proposed tax hike and keep spending right where he requested it at $749 million, or perhaps even raise spending by a couple of million.