The Rehoboth Beach commissioners at its regular meeting March 15 voted to approve a $24.3 million balanced budget for the 2019-20 fiscal year.

Included in the operating budget are expenses of $1.9 million for city administration, $2.9 million for the police department, $3.6 million for the streets department and $1.5 million for the parking department. The budget calls for $5.9 million in parking revenue generated from meters, permits, fines and other fees charged, $1.9 million in real estate tax revenue, $1.4 million in transfer tax revenue and $2 million in rental tax revenue. After much deliberation, the city will not be including an accommodations tax in this year’s budget. The commissioners will be discussing the tax for next year’s budget.

The approved budget is set to include increases in utility rates and real estate tax. The commissioners approved a budgeted real estate tax increase from 4 cents to 6 cents per every $100 of assessed value. The tax rate will be set at the June 21, regular commissioners meeting and will be in effect beginning July 1. This increase in revenue will go directly to fund stormwater upgrades, water main replacement, street paving, a new trash truck and boardwalk restroom renovations. Additionally, an overall increase of 30 percent for water and 60 percent for sewer will be effective April 1. This increase is necessary to pay for the ocean outfall project as well as water and wastewater facility projects.

“The balanced budget reflects the city’s continued commitment to providing public services and programs that enhance our residents’ quality of life,” said Mayor Paul Kuhns. “Guided by the commissioners and community input, the budget focuses on our significant deferred maintenance and infrastructure backlog. It takes planning, forecasting and difficult decision-making to utilize the available funding wisely.”

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