This has been a busy month for Northlake. Like most cities, summer is budget season and wrapping up our state-mandated work to deliver a financial plan for the coming year is one of the fundamental responsibilities of the town council and staff. This year’s budget delivers on four key priorities.
First, nine new positions across all functions were proposed. These positions will maintain our service levels in the face of unprecedented 48% population growth this past year. Police, public works, HR and development will all have more hands to lighten the load this year.
Second, we looked to the future to invest in projects that will deliver alternative revenue sources to ensure that our growth does not force us into higher taxes in the future. If the winter storm this year taught us anything, it should be that underfunding the future for short-term political and economic priorities is short sighted.
To this end, we are planning for expansion of our water and sewer systems up the Catherine Branch creek which will enable dozens of industrial and commercial projects over the next couple years. These will subsidize property taxes and enable high quality, well-financed services that our residents expect and deserve for years to come, without asking them for any change in our now 20+ year commitment to one of lowest tax rates in North Texas.
That is our third key priority. To continue to maintain a balanced, functional budget with the same low tax rate.
Finally, it wouldn’t be fair to not share the benefits of growth with the staff who have labored to ensure our protection and quality of life as it comes. We performed a multi-city competitive pay assessment and raised pay across all staff to the average pay for the multi-city area around us. This ensures stable staffing, maintains competitive hiring, and sends a message that we value our front-line and back office associates. Their performance continues to improve as they support more population per staff member.
Northlake continues to deliver on its mission.