ATHENS, Texas (KETK) – The Athens City Council approved their 2022-2023 budget and tax rate this week during a meeting.

The budget was set at $34,834,230 and is going to be divided into 13 parts. The general fund was granted the most money at $13,484,284.

57% of the general fund will be used for public safety and support the police and fire departments. 18% will pay for public works to fix the roads. These two items make up about 75% of the general fund.

During the meeting, the council also increased the General Fund Emergency Reserve by about $300,000, which brings the total to more than $3.3 million. This showed the council supports keeping a 90-day reserve.

Some of the items in the budget can be found below:

  • A 5% increase to the Step & Grade Pay Scale
  • $550,000 for street improvements
  • $135,000 to purchase and equip two new patrol cruisers
  • $30,000 in improvements to City facilities
  • $65,000 in funding for the Animal Shelter
  • $466,250 for Economic Development 
  • $100,000 for water lines on South Palestine
  • $100,000 Belt Press rental for both Wastewater Treatment Plants
  • $24,000 for Chemical Scales at the Wastewater Treatment Plants