City of Allen

The city of Allen is continuing its run of not proposing a property tax increase.

The city is proposing to keep its property tax of $0.489 per $100 valuation the same for the 2020-21 fiscal year.

Broken down that’s $0.39 dedicated to operations and maintenance (O&M) and $0.09 dedicated to the general obligation debt service.

According to the budget summary provided by City Manager Eric Ellwanger, the average single-family home value in Allen is $368,000, which is an increase of $362,000 from the previous year. If the proposed tax rate passes the tax paid on that average-valued home would be $1,800, which is $2 more than last year.

City officials said the last time the adopted rate was higher than the previous year’s rate was 1993.

Proposed projects

The city plans to begin several projects from the $18.1 million in proceeds received from the 2016 general obligation bond election.

Among those is the Steven G. Terrell Recreation Center at a cost of $14.5 million. The 149,000-square-foot facility will be built on Exchange Parkway, south of Ridgeview Drive. The total cost is $54 million, and it’s expected to be complete by the spring of 2023.

Plans include two gymnasiums featuring three recreation courts with up to eight courts for competitive play.

It will also include indoor play spaces, indoor walk/jog track, areas for weights, cardio and group fitness, an outdoor fitness deck, a café, a kitchen and a child watch area.

Also proposed are $2.2 million for various signal and roadway improvements, including reconstruction of Central Business District Street and improvements to Ridgeview Drive from Cottonwood Creek to Chelsea Boulevard.

Also set to begin in the coming fiscal year are phase 2 of Spirit Park ($500,000), phase 2 of the library retrofit and expansion design ($600,000) and the public art master plan ($367,940).

Overview

Allen’s general fund ending balance is projected to be $26 million, which gives the city 87.5 days of operational expenditures in reserve. That falls within the city’s goal of 60-90 days.

Some of the key general fund expenditures proposed this year include $1.6 million in public safety salary increases and $537,298 in salary increases for other positions.

A full-time employee is proposed in the community enhancement division to implement neighborhood activities in accordance with the five-year Community Enhancement Plan.

Sales tax revenue dropped 7 percent from the time the 2019-20 budget was adopted to its current revised version ($43 million to $40 million). The proposed 2020-21 budget projects sales tax revenue to come in at $40.2 million, a 6.6-percent decrease from the original 2019-20 budget.

But the budget states that the assessed property value for 2020-21 is $15 billion, a 3.5-percent increase from last year ($14.5 billion). Approximately $407 million of that comes from new property.

The budget and tax rate are expected to be adopted Sept. 8.

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