116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS - The Cedar Rapids City Council on Tuesday unanimously adopted a fiscal 2022 budget to support recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and Aug. 10 derecho, as well as advance racial justice priorities.
'Every department in the city has united around new realities as one, to rethink how we do business to deliver exceptional services to the citizens and businesses of Cedar Rapids while dealing with a pandemic and recovering from the derecho storm,” City Manager Jeff Pomeranz's budget letter states.
Among key initiatives included for the fiscal year beginning July 1 and ending June 30, 2022:
' $1 million for the first year of the city's multiyear commitment to helping fund the ReLeaf initiative, the city's public-private partnership with nonprofit Trees Forever to replant trees downed in the derecho.
' $24,000 for watering new trees during the first two years after planting.
' $25,000 for resources for the newly created nine-member citizens' police review board.
' $30,000 for a three-year agreement for an analysis to help track any potential bias in traffic enforcement stops.
As Cedar Rapids still is in the process of filing for reimbursements for derecho-related damage from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and debris cleanup work is underway, the budget may be amended in fiscal 2022.
Overall, the proposed total general fund budget is $142.2 million, 2 percent over fiscal 2021.
The property tax rate will increase by 22 cents per $1,000 in taxable property value. This means that homeowners would see a city tax rate of $15.88 per $1,000 in taxable property value.
That rate increase is part of a plan the council in 2018 approved to increase taxes annually to support a 10-year, $264 million borrowing plan covering much of the local share of the $750 million permanent flood control system.
Compared with some other Iowa cities' tax rates in fiscal 2021, the budget year ending June 30, Cedar Rapids' rate for fiscal 2022 is higher than four other cities - Iowa City, Sioux City, Ames and Dubuque.
City Finance Director Casey Drew said that even while being the only major city constructing such a large flood control system, 'our tax levy rate still is in the middle of the pack.”
The city has dedicated $51 million for flood control in fiscal 2022, an increase of $5.4 million.
Additionally, the rate for city water and utility bills will rise 4.9 percent, an increase of $61.20 annually for a typical water and sewer customer. The water service charge will rise 7.5 percent to fund operating costs and capital improvements.
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