HomeMunicipalRochester City Manager Presents Proposed FY2025 Budget

Rochester City Manager Presents Proposed FY2025 Budget

Rochester City Manager Katie Ambrose presented the proposed operating and capital budgets for fiscal year 2025 at the April 16th City Council workshop.

The City Manager’s proposed budget, inclusive of City, County, and Schools, is $149,852 below the tax cap and represents an estimated $3.20 tax rate decrease. The estimated tax rate decrease for the proposed budget reflects an estimated $600,000,000 increase in net assessed value following this year’s city-wide revaluation. In accordance with New Hampshire state law, the City of Rochester’s Assessing Department has begun work on a Full Statistical Revaluation of all real property with an effective date of April 1, 2024. The tax bill impact of the proposed budget cannot be estimated due to the 2024 revaluation, but it is anticipated that the revaluation will stabilize the impact of the amount to be raised by taxes.

Rochester’s FY25 tax cap is calculated per City Charter requirements as the total FY24 property tax effort, increased by the National Consumer Price Index – Urban (4.12%), plus the application of the net increase in new construction (2.13%). The FY25 Compliant Tax Effort is $77,709,374; or a tax cap compliant allowable increase of $4,575,727 (6.3%) over FY24. The proposed City, County, and School budgets are all below the tax cap and represent a collective decrease of $6,621,498 (-3.92%) over FY24.

The FY 2025 Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) Budget for City services, enterprise funds, and the School Department is proposed at $53,620,054 and represents a $15,770,010 decrease over FY24. The FY2025 Capital Improvements Program was the first to have been reviewed by the newly established Capital Improvements Program Committee. The committee’s review process resulted in a ranking report for capital projects evaluated against nine (9) set criteria. The final ranking report was submitted to the City Manager to inform the proposed CIP budget and FY25 budget process.

In developing the City Manager’s proposed budget, Ambrose stipulated that departments submit no more than a 3% Operating & Maintenance (O&M) budgetary increase, exclusive of salary and benefits. Any increases that exceeded the 3% and any new, expanded or reclassified positions required the submission of an “Issues & Options” (I&O) request. The City Manager included thirteen (13) of the seventeen (17) requested Issues & Options. Out of the thirteen (13) included I&Os, she identified two (2) of the included I&Os as required for implementation of the reorganization plan presented last fall, and four (4) as needed to support regulatory compliance in the Department of Public Works.

“Through the last several budget cycles, the City of Rochester has maintained its sound fiscal health without a loss of services and without significant increases in property taxes. The proposed fiscal year 2025 budget continues along these trends.” Said City Manager Ambrose.

City Council will continue to review the budget at a retreat on May 10th in Council Chambers at 9:30 am. Public hearings for the budget will be scheduled for May 21st.

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