Posted on 08/08/2022

Increased Focus on the People and Personnel of Duncanville

Duncanville, TX – During the August 2, 2022, regular meeting of the Duncanville City Council, City Manager Aretha R. Ferrell-Benavides presented the proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2022-2023 (FY23), “Change, Challenge, & Transformation.” The $99.5 million proposal will guide the operations of the City’s staff throughout the next year as both an operating blueprint and a policy document. The proposal includes increases in both the property and sales tax revenue collected by the City through increased property values and the overall cost of inflation for everyday items. The additional revenue is reflected in the increases in funding and personnel proposed for many City Departments to ensure the continuation of high-quality customer service.

The projected increase in revenue from property taxes due to rising home values has provided yet another opportunity to propose a tax reduction of $0.0466. This new rate would lower the ad valorem tax rate from $0.700000 to $0.653400. If adopted, this would signify the 5th time this Duncanville City Council reduced the tax rate.

“Duncanville homeowners are seeing their property tax bills rise as home values increase across the state,” Mayor Barry L. Gordon said. “I believe it is our City government’s responsibility to find ways where we can assist in reducing the financial burden on our citizenry. And so, I am pleased to see that the Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 2023 includes the largest rate reduction for our residents in over 20 years.”

“This year’s proposed budget is both progressive and realistically,” Ms. Ferrell-Benavides said. “The City and our team advanced in our financial and operational knowledge, and confidence are better equipped to accurately forecast revenues the City will receive and gauge the necessary expenditures to perform our duties.”

The proposed budget reflects the ever-evolving needs of Duncanville. It prioritizes a commitment to our people, both by serving the needs of our community – including residents, local businesses, and visitors – and retaining the internal staff who make that possible. New compensation and benefits recommendations, coupled with the proposed Customer Service CHEERS program to improve citizen access to staff and services, are just a few of the ways the City will put those goals into action.

To account for increasing costs from our service provider partners, utility fees will need to be increased. However, because Duncanville’s senior population is a particularly important part of our community and many seniors live on fixed incomes, the FY23 budget proposes two additional policies to ease the burden on our most cherished stakeholders. The first policy is a senior citizen discount on utility fees. And, since the topic of a homestead exemption has been a critical concern for our residents, this budget proposal also includes a two-year increase to the exemption amount for seniors and those with disabilities in the next appraisal cycle.

“The City of Duncanville is poised for growth and development,” Ms. Ferrell-Benavides said. “Our past fiscal practices, coupled with the recruitment and retention of a talented workforce, serve as the foundation for future success. Improvements introduced this year set the stage for us to do even better in Fiscal Year 2023.”

“The entirety of the fiscal year 2022-2023 budget is yet another example of the City Council’s attention to detail to ensure the utmost degree of stewardship over our citizens’ use of their tax monies,” stated Mayor Barry L. Gordon. “This budget process is indicative of the economic momentum underway throughout the many facets of the City’s operations and governance.”

The City will continue to keep the public engaged and informed during the budget development process. A budget workshop for the City Council is scheduled for Tuesday, August 9, at 6:00 PM in the Council Chambers. This workshop is open to the public. There will also be a Budget Town Hall meeting on Thursday, August 11, at 6:00 PM in the Council Chambers for citizens to provide feedback on the proposed budget. All residents are encouraged to attend one or both meetings.


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