Rock Island City Council members on Monday, Dec. 19, approved the City’s 2023 budget, keeping property taxes flat while maintaining a high level of city services, according to a news release.

With total expenditures of $159.9 million and budgeted revenues of $145.9 million, Finance Director Linda Barnes said the budget is balanced due to cash balances carrying over from the city’s more than 50 funds. Of the $145.9 million in anticipated revenues: $29.8 million will come from local and state taxes; $28.3 million in charges for services; $18.9 million on property taxes; $18.7 million in grants, and more.

“In my 21 years with the city, this has been one of the best budget processes that I can recall,” Barnes said. “We are going into 2023 with a very strong budget and a positive outlook.” In the general fund, the city has $50.3 million in budgeted expenses. The general fund ended its 2021 audit with nearly $1.8 million surplus over reserves. In 2021, the city had 90 days of reserves totaling $9.9 million.

“I would like to thank the City Council and all the employees of the City of Rock Island fora great 2021 with a $1.8 million surplus and an even larger surplus for 2022,” Mayor Mike Thoms said. “The City of Rock Island continues to be headed in the right direction. The city’s tax rate will remain virtually unchanged at 2.7517%, with a slight increase of $1.04 annually per $100,000 of equalized assessed value, or EAV – on a home. The City’s EAV – the total taxable value of all residential, commercial and industrial properties within city limits – is projected to increase by 4.64%, helping to keep the tax rate virtually the same.”

Due to the increased EAV, he said, property tax revenues are projected to increase by $690,961. Personal Property Replacement Tax (PPRT) receipts from the state continued to outperform expectations this year, resulting in a projected surplus of more than $5 million for 2022. State income tax receipts continued to benefit from improving labor markets and extraordinary receipts from corporate income tax, giving the city a projected surplus of more than $1 million for 2022.

City council members also approved a five-year Capital Improvement Plan with $20 million of total spending on various projects funded by sources such as the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), gaming tax, general fund, tax increment financing (TIF), user fees, motor fuel tax and the local gas tax. Projects include $3.5 million in road and street improvements: $2.1 million for resurfacing of 31st Avenue from Rock Island-Milan Parkway to 11th Street; $655,000 for reconstruction of 22nd Street and 35th Avenue; $334,000 in ARPA funds will be spent to repair the Rock Island-Milan Parkway; and $50,000 for reconstruction of 1st Avenue.