The 2022-2023 fiscal year budget ordinance, which was finally posted to the website and is scheduled to be voted on by the Greensboro City Council at the 5:30 p.m. meeting on Tuesday, June 21, has some surprises.

The manager’s recommended 2022-2023 budget has increased to $688 million.

The recommended budget presented in May by City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba totaled $680 million dollars – an increase of over $60 million from the 2021-2022 budget of $619 million.  That recommended budget set the tax rate at 66.25 cents.

However, some city councilmembers requested that the tax rate be lowered, and the revised budget presented by Jaiyeoba last week cut $1 million from the Greensboro Police Department budget and used some accounting tricks to lower the proposed tax rate to 63.25 cents, which still represents an 8.69 cent tax increase over the revenue neutral rate.

However, in lowering the proposed tax increase, Jaiyeoba also managed to raise the total city expenditures for the proposed 2022-2023 budget from $680 million to $688 million.

So the proposed tax rate increase was lowered by 3 cents and the total expenditures increased by $8 million.

The $688 million budget on the agenda for approval at the June 21 meeting is nearly $70 million more than the budget for the current fiscal year of $619 million.

A year ago in June 2021, then City Manager David Parrish – who is a native of Greensboro and was an assistant city manager from 2012 to 2018 before being named manager in 2018 – recommended a $619 million budget that he said in his budget message, “provides the services necessary and expected, to preserve and support our community and employees, and prepares for the present and future challenges.”

At the City Council retreat in March, Mayor Nancy Vaughan and members of the City Council discussed the fact that the tax rate might need to be raised by a couple of cents over the revenue neutral rate.  However, there was no discussion of a tax increase of nearly 12 cents, as was recommended by Jaiyeoba, or even of an increase of nearly 9 cents that is in the revised budget.

Although the City Council did discuss increasing expenditures, no one on the City Council suggested increasing expenditures by nearly $70 million.