“Working together to craft responsible budgets, while also being judicious in our spending habits, has put us in the position of being under our maximum allowed levy limit, freeing up capacity should we require it in future years to meet operational needs.”
Driscoll also said that this tax increase will be among the lowest on the North Shore, at least as far as things have shaped up so far. The average increase approved in Beverly this year was $216, in Marblehead $268, in Danvers $206, in Middleton $220 and in Hamilton $202. Peabody and Swampscott haven’t yet set their rates.
Last night, the City Council also approved a recommendation that $500,000 of the city’s free cash — money saved from the previous year or gained via unexpectedly high revenues — be used to offset the total to be raised by taxation.
The City Council also opted to keep the city’s split tax rate at 1.65, the rate it’s been at for about a decade. The split tax rate shifts a portion of the total tax burden away from residential properties and onto commercial, industrial and personal properties.
All votes regarding property taxes were passed unanimously by the 11 councilors present.
Neil Dempsey can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org.