BY DAVID REAGOR
Los Alamos County Councilor
The FY2024 county budgets are under discussion and a tax increase is under consideration. The proposal is to increase the GRT by half a percent. This will generate approximately $12 million per year. A tax that commences on Jan. 1, 2024 it would generated 6 M$ for half of a fiscal year. In the chart below I collected the final actual budget for the last two years.
For the current year only a projected balance is available. I also show the budgeted number for this year and next year. The ending balance is the reserve we maintain in the general fund. All the numbers are in millions of dollars.
Fiscal year 2022 2023 Budget 2023 2023 Projected 2024 Budget
GRT collected 56 66 65 75 86
Ending Balance 48 60 46 57 66
According to the budget documents the ending balance is estimated to be $66 million for FY2024.
If we do not increase the GRT we still have a revised budgeted ending balance of $60 million for FY2024. This is a healthy reserve balance. The GRT taxes and the projected ending balance were about $10 million over budget in 2023. In addition, in previous years the LANL GRT component has been well over the budgeted estimates. Even with conservative estimates there is no financial shortfall.
At this time there is no need for a tax increase. There are also some potential spending cuts that should be considered. Contact me at email@example.com if you have any questions or comments.