KNOX COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs is proposing a $954-million budget for the 2022-2023 Fiscal Year which is a more than $60-million increase from last year.
This budget is broken down into several categories including a General Fund, Engineering and Public Works, Schools, and Knox County’s 5 Year General Improvement Plan.
“The board of education has proposed a budget of $591,500,000. It’s almost $15 million more than last year, which is an increase of just over 9 percent,” said Jacobs.
Along with a 4% raise for school employees, Jacobs hopes to continue funding literacy programs and skills training programs for high school students.
As part of the county’s 5 Year General Improvement Plan, $11 million would be set aside to add 32 additional classrooms to Hardin Valley Academy and $3 million for a new Farragut Elementary School.
The growth of Knox County is why the new classrooms and road improvements are needed according to Jacobs.
“In this budget, we’re allocating $16.7 million for new roads and safety improvements.”
Another large portion of the budget is going towards law enforcement.
“Almost $96 million dollars is [allocated for] the sheriff’s office. The mission of public safety is much more than just law enforcement,” explained Jacobs. “Therefore, incoming deputies on patrol will now be making $44,352 a year to start”
General government employees could see a 4% salary increase.
With the new budget Mayor Jacobs said there will not be a property tax increase and it will stay consistent at $2.12.
Although property taxes aren’t expected to increase the proposal does mention raises in local option sales tax, current property taxes, and the gasoline tax.
You can view the proposed increases below:
- 14.6% increase in Local Option Sales Tax related to the General Fund (equivalent to $1.2 million)
- 2.5% increase in Current Property Taxes (equivalent to $3 million)
- 13.2% increase in Local Option Sales Tax related to Engineering and Public Works (equivalent to $1 million)
- 6.3% increase in Gasoline Tax (equivalent to $400,000)
- 24.7% increase in Local Option Sales Tax related to General Purpose School Fund (equivalent to $43.7 million)
- 2.5% increase in Current Property Taxes related to General Purpose School Fund (equivalent to $2.7 million)
The budget still needs county commission approval, but Jacobs said this is a good start to moving forward.