City Council eyes taxes, land-use issues; other news and notes

The Biloxi City Council, in one of the final stages of drafting a municipal budget for Fiscal Year 2008, is expected to set a tax rate for Biloxi property owners during its meeting at City Hall on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.

The city’s property tax rate has remained the same or been lowered for each of the last 16 years.

“We’ve been very fortunate,” said Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway, who had originally proposed keeping the rate flat in his FY ’08 budget proposal. “Over the years, we’ve been able to conservatively manage our growing revenue streams – property taxes, and gaming and sales taxes – and reduce the tax rate where possible while also enhancing municipal services.”

At Tuesday’s meeting, the council will set the tax levy or “millage rate.” The millage rate is part of the formula used to determine taxes on each parcel of land in the city. For owner-occupied homes, the assessed value is multiplied by the millage rate to determine the amount of tax.

To see the property tax rate as it compares to the revenue it generates, traditionally less than a quarter of the city’s annual operating revenue, click here.

You can read more financial information about municipal operations in the finance section of the city web site. To go there, click here.

Also on the agenda: The City Council on Tuesday will face three land-use issues, including a neighbor’s appeal of a decision to allow the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2434 to relocate to the corner of Howard and Kuhn streets. To see the complete agenda and available resolutions, click here.

Bringing down the curtain on FEMA-supported debris removal

The final number is in: 2.98 million cubic yards of debris.

The city of Biloxi hauled away enough debris to cover a football field with a pile that would stand more than 140 stories high, four times taller than either the Beau Rivage or IP. To see the breakdown on types of debris hauled, when the majority of it was hauled, and where it was hauled from, click here.

News and notes

Weekend preview: Topping the Labor Day weekend entertainment lineup are the World Poker Tournament’s Gulf Coast Poker Championship at Beau Rivage, Macy Gray at Hard Rock, the Nevilles at Hollywood Casino in Bay St. Louis, and the first annual Riverfest in Moss Point. To see the complete entertainment listing, as compiled by the Mississippi Gulf Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau, click here.

Laboring away: Non-emergency municipal offices and divisions will be closed Monday in observance of Labor Day. All are scheduled to re-open Tuesday at their normal times.

Webcasting: Bay Press editor Gene Coleman moderates a discussion of the week in Biloxi city government in this week’s “City Desk” webcast. To listen to the 20-minute program, click here.