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Raising Your Taxes: How Your City Budget Coming Up Short Means You Could Too

Kosciusko, MISS– September 15th is the deadline for your city to have its budget together. If things look like they’ll be tight next year, you could see a tax increase. 

But before that tax increase comes, there’s a lengthy process the city goes through to try to prevent it.

“In June, we meet with all the department heads to see how much they spent and what they have left in their budget,” says Jimmy Cockroft, Mayor of Kosciusko, “after we’ve looked over that, say a couple of weeks later, those departments can make their requests for what they’ll need for the next year.”

Cockroft says that then they look at the budget for sanitation, parks, and any other departments as well as their general fund.

“At that point, we have to make sure that we’ll take in enough to cover what we’ll need for the next year,” says Cockroft, “we may have to add an increase if we’re say, a mil short.”

But Cockroft says even if the city has gotten to the point of deciding on an increase, there’s still one thing that will make them change their minds; the people. Before the budget can be published by that September 15th deadline, cities are required by law to hold a public hearing regarding its contents.

“We had set that we would have an increase,” says Cockroft, “but after a public hearing, we decided against it.”

Cockroft says attending those public hearings and alderman meetings can keep your taxes from going up if people are active in the process.

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