Anna City Council gave the final approval to the city’s 2013-14 fiscal year budget, set the 2013 tax rate and held a public hearing on utility rates, all at Tuesday’s meeting.

Following the public hearing, Council approved an increase for water/sanitary sewer rates.

Council approved and adopted the proposed Anna fiscal year 2013-14 budget, which is available for review on the city’s web site at Finance Director Clayton Fulton said that the annual budget and plan of municipal services is the most important document that is adopted by the city council each year. In presenting the information to Council he pointed out that from 2008 to 2011 the taxable value of existing properties in Anna declined an average of 3 percent per year equating to a loss of over $42 million in taxable value.

The value of existing properties stabilized in 2012 and valuation from the 2013 tax year shows an increase in the existing property values for the first time since 2008. Additionally, approximately $30 million in new construction was added to the tax roll last year. The growth in taxable value corresponds to a significant increase in population over the past 12 months. According to the most recent population estimates published by the North Texas Council of Governments Anna’s population as of January 1, 2013 was at 9,360.

Fulton said that for 2013 a similar growth pattern has occurred and is forecasted to continue over the next 12 months. With the growth in population comes a proportional increase in demand for municipal services that are primarily funded by property taxes.

Council set the tax rate at $.65 per $100 valuation for the 2013 tax year, which is identical to the current tax rate.

A separate vote was taken by Council, as required by Texas statutes, to ratify the adoption of the budget since it will raise more revenue from property taxes than the previous year. The tax revenue will increase by $357,069, with $195,839 coming from new properties added to the tax roll with the remaining amount due to increased existing property values.

A public hearing was held for public comments on a proposed city ordinance amending water and sanitary sewer rates. There were no comments from those in attendance. Following the public hearing the ordinance was adopted. Based on projected population growth, maintenance of operations and future capital improvements, water and sewer rates will increase by 4 percent on Dec. 1. According to city staff data, the typical residential water customer uses about 7,000 gallons of water in an average month. The rate adjustment will increase the average monthly utility bill by $3.68. The last utility rate increase was in 2010 when the base rate for water and sewer were both increased by $4 per month.

"We are approaching the point where most of our water will be purchased surface water. Well water is not an infinite commodity," said City Manager Philip Sanders.

An ordinance adding regulations pertaining to construction standards for residential driveway and walkway standards was passed by council.

"Recently, six driveways were poured without rebar reinforcement which had to be removed and re-poured," explained Planning Director Maurice Schwanke. The ordinance will insure that no future misunderstandings will occur regarding driveways and walkways.