San Marcos City Council To Hold Final Budget Hearing, Tax Rate Hearing


The City of San Marcos City Council will hold two public hearings tonight regarding the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 budget.

The council approved the FY 2021 budget and 2020 Tax Rate on the first of two readings on Sept. 1 unanimously.

The city is proposing a budget of $258,741,410 with a tax rate of $.5930 per $100 of taxable valuation of real property; the proposed tax rate will generate 7.9% more revenue than they received for FY 2020 under the 2019 tax rate of $.6139.  

The City of San Marcos’s “No-New-Revenue Tax Rate” for 2020 is $.5650; under the “No-New-Revenue” rate, homeowners would pay the same amount in property taxes as they did for 2019.

According to the City of San Marcos FY 2020 Budget, which totals $239 Million, “property tax appraisals have increased by 11 percent for FY 2020, and the city is seeing indications of continued growth for the future with the addition of residential developments, business growth, and continued economic development opportunities.”

The agenda states the proposed tax will generate an additional $2.7 Million. Of that, $1.5 million will be from new property.

The proposed budget includes rate adjustments of 5% for Water, 3% for Wastewater, 6.5% for Stormwater, and 3% for Solid Waste and Recycling.

Sales tax remains the largest single revenue source supporting general governmental services in San Marcos, according to the city budget. 

In FY 2020, sales taxes represented 44.4 percent of the total general fund revenue projected for the year’s budget.

During budget workshops, the city council aimed to reduce costs by $5.5 million and make up a remaining $900,000 through a utility fee increase to cover revenue shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since March, the city of San Marcos has seen a steady increase in sales tax revenue.

For Sept. 2020, the city received approximately $4.04 million compared to Sept. 2019’s $2.7 million, a 49.53% rise in revenue.

In August 2020, sales tax revenue redistributed to the city was 52.81% higher than August 2019, and the city saw an increase of 63.03% in sales tax revenue for July 2020 compared to July 2019.

The City Council is slated to approve the FY 2021 budget and ratify the 2020 Tax Rate tonight night following the final public hearings.

Residents can submit comments to be read by staff to or sign up to address the council via phone or zoom with the City Clerk’s office. Requests must be submitted by NOON today. 

Breakdown of General Fund additions:

  • $500K to sworn Fire and Police as agreed upon in the FY19 Meet & Confer
  • Personnel funding allocation for all non-civil service employees effective Oct. 1st
  • EMS annual funding and expansion of service increase of $533K
  • Annual contracted services increase
  • Economic development incentive and TIRZ payments increase $7.9M
  • $5.7M for 75% of sales taxes generated by the Best Buy call center.
  • Three Captains and one Firefighter to complete staffing of new station No.6 funded by voter
  • approved bond proceeds
  • Planner
  • Historic Preservation Officer 100% dedicated with existing staff
  • Two Community Enhancement Technicians and Horticultural Specialist funded by Community
  • Enhancement Fee
  • HVAC Service Technician
  • Financial Analyst

Electric Fund additions include:

  • Complex Meter Technician
  • Senior Electrical Engineer
  • Electrical Engineering Technician
  • Utility Financial Analyst
  • Contract Services
  • Additional vehicles lease and equipment for new positions
  • Professional Development
  • Bucket Truck
  • Transformer and substation test equipment

Water/Wastewater Fund additions include:

  • Water Collection Crew Leader
  • Conservation Irrigation Inspector
  • Contract Services
  • Additional vehicle lease for new positions
  • SCAD system upgrades and maintenance
  • Tilt camera
  • Maintenance skid
  • Jet/vacuum truck
  • Hydro excavator

Stormwater Fund additions include:

  • Street sweeper
  • Dump truck
  • Track hoe

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  1. “Pleasantly surprised.” That was I said to my wife as we drove by one of the city’s playgrounds tonight. I was pleasantly surprised. I think I’ve been pretty clear that the city kept the playgrounds closed for far too long. And, I expected them to slow roll the reopenings. I figured might continue playing the “open” but not really game. But not this time.

    So thank you. My kids cannot wait to see their friends again and play on different equipment. I’m sure you’ve made their day.

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