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Vidalia - State of the City "Excellent"
Tuesday, 19 October 2010

October 19--  City administrators in Vidalia say the state of the city, in spite of the economic slowdown, is "in excellent shape and we're bright about the future."

The same week the city mailed out its property tax bills, the city compiled a state of the city report which notes that less than ten percent of the city's revenue comes from property taxes, according to city manager Bill Torrance.

"Property taxes account for 9.4% of our overall revenue sources, and the millage rate has not increased in the city in the past 18 years," Torrance reports.

Torrance also contends that what you get in return for property taxes is a good deal, "A $200,000 house generates about $200 for the city in taxes, and for that you're getting police, fire, recreation and roads," he says.

The property tax rate for 2011 will produce a net loss of nearly $20,000 in revenue, however, sales tax collections are slightly up and sales taxes account for more than a third of the city's revenue.

Officials say general fund revenue is ahead of budget and expenditures are under budget which means the city is operating "in the black" with a general fund balance of about $285,000.

The report notes water and sewer finances are improving after a slow summer. Revenue is ahead of budget by about $11,000 and expenses are less than the amount budgeted.

Details of the city's financial status are available to any citizen at city hall.


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