Glendale adopts 2014 budget, includes property tax hike - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

Glendale adopts 2014 budget, includes property tax hike

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GLENDALE, AZ (CBS5) -

The city of Glendale adopted its 2014 budget Friday morning.

"During the challenging times in the economy, we were impacted," said Glendale's senior communication manager Jennifer Stein. "There wasn't as much sales tax collected during those times, so we are recovering from that."

The $576 million budget includes a 1.5 percent increase to the city's general fund, which covers day-to-day operations of public safety along with parks and libraries.

But, it wasn't enough to fund the extra manpower requested by the police and fire departments.

"We asked for eight firefighters and two fire trucks to provide relief to the call volume and to help reduce our response times," said Glendale Fire Chief Mark Burdick.

The requests were denied.

The new budget also wipes out 27 fire and police jobs left vacant and unfunded for the past several years.

"We're in the time business," Burdick said. "So for us, time is our product, if you will. The faster we get there, the better the outcome."

Glendale police released a statement.

"We do not believe this year's budget will impact PD services. As for response times, we are implementing some new strategies. For example, we have changed our Patrol Deployment Strategy form Zones to Beats to help reduce response times and enhance services. Basically, officers will be assigned to smaller areas of responsibility (beats) rather than larger areas such as zones. We believe this will not only help reduce response times but also provide officers a greater ability to partner and develop relationships with citizens, business, schools, etc. within the area of responsibility."

Glendale's 2014 budget also includes an increase in city property taxes from $1.90 per $1,000 in assessed value to $2.28.

"The city of Glendale at the $1.59 rate in 2009 was collecting $10 million more than what it will today at the $2.28 rate because of the property value decline," said Stein.

According to the city, if your assessed home valuation stayed the same or increased, you'll be paying more.

Residents whose homes continue to lose value will notice a smaller bill.

The new budget goes into effect when the 2014 fiscal year begins on July 1.

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