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Fund revenues expected to increase

March 09, 1999|By SCOTT BUTKI

Washington County's general fund revenues for fiscal 2000 will be about $5.16 million higher than the amount in the 1999 budget year, the budget and finance director told the Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday.

Debra Bastian estimated the county's total general fund revenues would be $111.18 million, 4.87 percent more than was in the fiscal 1999 budget.

Bastian estimated fiscal 1999 revenues will actually be about $108.67 million.

The total revenues may be even higher if the economy remains in good condition, the commissioners said. Bastian said she would like to remain with her estimates rather than make that assumption.

The County Commissioners have not yet seen the estimated general fund expenditures for 2000.

The commissioners are scheduled to adopt the budget at a May 4 meeting. The annual public hearing on the budget is April 27.

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The budget packet distributed to the Washington County Commissioners contained information about how much money the county could raise by increasing the property tax rate. However, that was only included in the packet for informational purposes, County Administrator Rodney Shoop said.

A large portion of the revenue increase comes from real estate and personal property taxes. She estimated those revenues would be $63.18 million, or 3.58 percent higher than the current fiscal year.

One reason for that increase is some major new projects, she said.

Specifically, the county's revenue will increase because of the $43 million Valley Mall expansion, the Centre at Hagerstown and Phase III of Prime Outlets at Hagerstown, she said.

The expanded mall and the Centre at Hagerstown are scheduled to open in the fall. Prime Outlets is set to increase the number of outlet stores from 75 to about 105 before the holiday season.

Bastian estimated a 26.85 percent, or $242,900, increase in revenues from licenses and permits. She also predicted a 9 percent, or $3.43 million, increase for local taxes.

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