CBJ Assembly Finance Committee leaves mill rate unchanged

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly Finance Committee left the mill rate unchanged at 10.56 during their meeting on Wednesday at City Hall.

    The mission of the committee was to approve the city's next budget and included a summary update from City Finance Director Jeff Rogers.

    Rogers said that if $16 million of unexpected state revenue comes in, in the form of school bond debt reimbursement, the budget still produces a surplus in FY 23 of $8.8 million. Rogers says the pandemic's financial drawdown was unprecedented, but the $16 million will help, despite future deficits that are predicted.

    When committee member Michelle Bonnet-Hale asked if there was any signal from Gov. Dunleavy about vetoing school bond debt reimbursement, Rogers said mum has been the word.

    “The governor has said almost nothing publicly about what he would consider vetoing and not vetoing,” Rogers said. “In fact, media has said the governor has been unusually tight-lipped on that subject. We intuit from our lobbyist that that the conference committee action to reduce the dividend, to make the size and scale of the overall budget deficits smaller, reduces the pressure on the Governor to veto things.”

    Committee member Greg Smith proposed an unchanged 10.56 mill rate, which passed the body.

    “I'm proposing a flat mill rate from the prior year, to essentially have some sensitivity to the cost increases that property taxpayers are seeing,” Smith said, adding that he thought it was also a way for the Assembly to, "put some downward pressure on the budget.”

    The budget now moves to the full Assembly for consideration.

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