Rockwall, Texas – The Rockwall City Council unanimously voted to decrease the tax rate for its residents last week. Continuing a trend spanning a decade, the council has opted for a rate that sits below the no new revenue tax rate—previously recognized as the effective rate. In Rockwall’s documented history, this newly approved tax rate is an all-time low—being 2.22 cents less than the previous year’s rate. Alongside this, the Council, in the same meeting, greenlit the budget for the 2023-2024 fiscal year.
During a string of work sessions combined with public hearings, the Council had directed its staff to draft a balanced budget anchored on the no new revenue tax rate. To put it in simpler terms, this rate ensures that the City’s tax collection remains consistent with the prior year, and this calculation is derived from state-prescribed formulas. The updated tax rate, now standing at 27.0245 cents per every $100 valuation, indicates a drop from the 29.25 cents assigned in the preceding year. It’s essential to note that the exact change in the ad valorem tax for every distinct property primarily depends on its assessed worth.
Rockwall new budget – key things to know
Highlighting the new budget, a significant $3.4 million is set aside for pivotal sectors such as vehicles, personnel training, and more critically, public safety departments. Recognizing the appeal parks have for the residents, the budget makes provisions for aesthetic and safety advancements, enhancing the features in Rockwall parks. Animal lovers will be pleased as the budget also earmarks additions to the city’s Animal Adoption Center, ensuring an enriched life quality for the animals. Notably, the city is also channeling funds into a state-of-the-art sound system to serenade Downtown Rockwall, enhancing the ambiance of the historic district.
Addressing other crucial areas, the budget considers retention and inflation concerns for City personnel, particularly those stationed at the Police and Fire Departments. Infrastructure hasn’t been left out either. There’s a marked 7.7% boost for street maintenance, along with other major street project allocations.
Rockwall Mayor Trace Johannesen underscored the city’s ongoing economic prosperity, primarily powered by augmented sales tax revenue. He remarked, “Both residents and visitors are choosing to shop Rockwall businesses, and it makes a huge difference in our local economy.” Johannesen added, “The City of Rockwall works diligently to adopt a balanced budget every year, while lowering taxes—and continuing to invest in public safety, critical infrastructure, and the high-quality services our residents enjoy. This added revenue allows us to do that, without burdening our taxpayers.”
The budget isn’t just numbers and allocations. It’s a representation of Rockwall’s commitment to its residents. While the primary focus remains public safety, parks and recreation, and street repairs, the budget steers clear of touching upon the Street Repair Bond, which gained voter approval in 2018. A surge in sales tax revenue and growth-related new value increase have allowed the city to adopt a rate below the no new revenue rate. It’s worth noting that this decision was made without significant cuts to the budget. The residents of Rockwall can look forward to a promising fiscal year starting October 1, 2023.
The significant tax rate cut in Rockwall comes at time when Rockwall ISD is seeing some positive trends. According to a recent report, officials confirmed that Rockwall ISD is seeing significant increase in student enrollment. The Rockwall ISD addressed this trend and is looking forward to properly adapt in the future. Meanwhile, another report shows that Rockwall ISD students shine in National Merit Scholarship Program. We hope that this achievements will continue in the future too.