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Recommended Hickory Budget Includes an 8.5% Increase Over the Current Year’s Budget

On Tuesday, May 16 Hickory City Manager Warren Wood delivered his Fiscal Year (FY) 2023-2024 Recommended Budget to Hickory City Council members on May 16. The Recommended Budget totals $136,914,727 for all City operations, capital improvements, and debt service requirements for the upcoming year. This represents an 8.5% increase over the current year’s budget.

Key components of the 2023-2024 budget include the general fund, water and sewer fund, and solid waste fund. For the main operating fund a budget of $68,564,275 is recommended, which represents an 8.6% increase over the current year’s budget. The property tax rate for FY2023-2024 is recommended to be reduced from 62.75 cents to the revenue neutral property tax rate of 45.5 cents per $100 of assessed value. The recommended tax rate reflects the significant increase experienced in market-driven real estate values following the county-wide revaluation of real property. City Manager Warren Wood recommended to improve the water and sewer infrastructure and maintain the enterprise fund’s self-sufficiency. This will equate to about a $2.35 per month increase on the average residential water and sewer bill. An increase of the solid waste company of $1 is recommended to bring the monthly sanitation rate up to $27 per month for the upcoming fiscal year. This increase will help to offset increases in fuel and labor costs.

During Woods budget message he said, “Despite Hickory and our region’s economic challenges between 2001 and 2013, we have since witnessed a steady economic upturn,” said Wood in his budget message. “The Inspiring Spaces Initiative’s success and the strategic investments made through the City’s bond program have strengthened our economic position. The resulting private sector investments, job opportunities, and residential growth have contributed to the overall prosperity and economic well-being of the Hickory Metro area.” The Hickory City Council welcomes public input and will hold a public hearing on the FY2023-2024 Recommended Budget on Tuesday, June 6, at 7 p.m., during its regular City Council meeting at the Julian G. Whitener Municipal Building.

The full 2023-2024 Recommended Budget is available for review online at