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Managing Town finances conservatively is a key priority of the Castle Rock Town Council.
Council recently approved several items that further this priority, including a $241.2 million budget for 2018 that includes no tax or rate increases, meaning water rates for existing customers will stay flat for 2018. Additionally, Council initially approved a decrease in the Town’s portion of the local property tax rate for 2018.
The good news continues beyond 2018. Council also approved a three-year financial plan and a five-year capital project plan that indicate the Town will have sufficient financial capacity to accomplish a number of important infrastructure projects and public safety investments, among other items, in the years to come.
Full details of all of the financial items Town Council approved on Sept. 19 are available at CRgov.com/2018 budget.
The 2018 Budget includes $120.2 million for operations and $121 million for capital improvements, debt and transfers between funds. Improvements to the Town’s water system comprise a significant portion of the capital improvements.
Transportation initiatives totaling $21.28 million also are anticipated next year, including road improvements at Founders Parkway and Allen Way; Founders Parkway and Crowfoot Valley Drive; and at Wolfensberger Road and Plum Creek Parkway/Coachline Road.
Additional highlights within the 2018 budget include $2 million to operate and add 12 staff for Fire Station 152, which will open next year in Crystal Valley, and five new positions for the Police Department.
The budget also emphasizes maintaining strong Parks and Recreation; supporting economic development; and strengthening our unique community identity. A community group is envisioned to be formed to collaborate with the Town on the latter item.
Council gave initial approval to a 2018 property tax rate of 1.330 mills, which is down from the 2017 rate of 1.474 mills. The proposed rate means the owner of a median-valued home in Castle Rock ($373,254 as of May 2017) would pay $35.74 in annual Town property tax in 2018. Final adoption of the 2018 property tax mill levy is expected to occur in early December.