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The City of Jackson’s Interactive Budgeting Tools Promote Transparency and Fiscal Accountability
Posted on 10/29/2020

JACKSON, Tenn. – On Thursday, Mayor Scott Conger announced the addition of two new financial tools to the city’s website- the budget simulator and taxpayer receipt.

The budget simulator reflects the adopted budget for fiscal year 2021. This budget was adopted in June 2020 during the early onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Revenues were budgeted conservatively due to the unknown effects of the virus on the community’s economy. Conservative estimations lead to an initial projection of a $3.7 million budget deficit; however, revenues are already rebounding faster than originally predicted.

To use the budget simulator a resident simply enters their zip code and can then navigate tabs for both revenue and spending. The revenue tab projects monetary estimations for the following revenues streams: property tax, various taxes, intergovernmental, use of property, miscellaneous revenues and the use of fund balance. The spending tab estimates the following government expenses: general government, public facilities, public safety, public works, parks and recreation, capital outlay and debt service. Using the two simulators, users can add or subtract to each budget category in order to balance the budget. When a user hovers over a category, more specific information is given like rates, delinquency, interest, fees, payments in lieu of, investments, permits, fines, penalties, etc.

The second tool is the taxpayer receipt. Using an individual’s annual income, age, consumer habits and property info- the software will estimate how much a resident pays in taxes and where each dollar is spent. The “receipt” is a line by line breakdown of 28 different categories. Categories include police, fire, animal care center, groundskeeping, elected offices, economic development, recreation, etc.

“Mayor Conger believes that education and awareness are imperative to facilitate growth and improvement,” said Alex Reed, City Manager. “When taxpayers can make informed decisions, we have the benefit of being held accountable for our choices while facilitating an invaluable discussion on efficiency.”

Both tools can be found by clicking the "Budget" link under the "Government" tab on jacksontn.gov. Exploration, questions, comments and budget submissions are welcome and appreciated.

For more information, visit jacksontn.gov or call 731.425.8240.

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