Huntersville officials are proposing a town budget that raises spending in the 2015-16 fiscal year by about 5 percent but keeps the tax rate the same.
The proposed budget of $55.8 million is $2.8 million higher than the current year’s spending plan and would fund Main Street improvements, additions to the police force and a new fire station, as well as paying down the town’s debt.
The tax rate would remain the same, at 30.5 cents per $100 of valuation.
Main Street improvements will be one of the big capital expenses in fiscal year 2015-2016, totaling $10 million of the total proposed budget. The improvements would redirect traffic from Old Statesville Road to Main Street, a plan that commissioners call the “Two-Way Pair” project. The plan would create an alternate way to travel through downtown Huntersville. The improvements would run from Mount Holly-Huntersville Road to Fourth Street on the northern end of Old Statesville Road.
“This allows us to add capacity to our system without widening N.C. 115, which really isn’t feasible due to traffic and closeness of buildings and structures to the road,” said Bobby Williams, assistant to the town manager. Additionally, the upgrades also activate spaces throughout the downtown for redevelopment, including Anchor Mill, a 30-plus acre site owned by the town.”
The project would use $5 million in funds from the state that are allocated as part of the toll lane project on Interstate 77.
Other improvements to Main Street include storm water improvements, resurfacing and widening of the street.
Additional proposed capital projects include a new fire station in the southeast area of town, upgrading Gibson Park Drive and extending Stumptown Road to the east of N.C. 115.
The Police Department would add three officers to the force, replace 12 police vehicles and add a SWAT vehicle and new automated vehicle license plate readers.
According to Williams, minor changes are still being made to the budget based on a workshop held May 11.
If adopted, the proposed budget will go into effect at the beginning of the new fiscal year, which is July 1. Once it has been approved, the budget will be placed on the town’s website. Hard copies will also be available at Huntersville Town Hall and the North County Regional Library.
For details about the budget, go to http://www.huntersville.org/Departments/Finance.aspx