Richardson’s budget proposal includes no tax rate increase | Local Government

In the general fund, revenue is expected to grow by $14.8 million, or 4.8%, compared to the current budget. Richardson said after obligations and mandates, the county has about $2 million in new revenue for fiscal year 2022.

The proposal includes funding to raise the minimum wage for general government employees to $15 an hour, which the county had previously removed from its budget due to the pandemic, and a 2% raise for employees.

Funding to provide weekday daytime staff at North Garden Volunteer Fire Company, which the department requested, is also included. If approved, Scottsville Volunteer Fire Department and Western Albemarle Rescue Squad will remain the only all-volunteer stations in Albemarle.

Deputy County Executive Doug Walker said the county is currently doing strategic planning work with the volunteers to understand the stresses that they are feeling and their ability to continue to provide services at the volunteer level.

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“ … So that we can be better able to support them for one thing, because it’s such a strong advantage to help them continue to provide services voluntarily, and some of that’s financial and maybe other ways we can support them,” he said. “But it’s also taking a look at how the community is changing and where the stresses are on the overall system, regardless of whether it’s career or volunteer that are responding to it.”