On Sept. 2, the Johnson County Board of Commissioners adopted the FY 2022 Operating and Capital Improvement Budget, totaling approximately $1.45 billion. The mill levy will be reduced, and taxes will increase about $3.17 for the average residential property.
The amount of county taxes (estimated October mill levy 25.547 mills) based on an average $362,000 residential property in 2022 will be about $1,064, or approximately $88.67 per month. That is an average monthly property tax increase of $3.17. The average residential property was estimated at $346,000 in 2021 with average county taxes of $1,026 or $85.50 per month.
The budget was crafted with an estimated mill levy of 25.497 mills, a .30 reduction from the FY 2021 mill levy. With pending exemptions, once the latest assessed property valuation is determined in October, the anticipated final mill levy will represent an estimated .25 mill levy reduction.
“The adopted budget maintains the county’s solid financial condition,” said Cindy Postoak-Ferguson. “This budget adheres to the commission’s direction to maintain a sufficient general fund reserve, puts resources towards the programs and services that align with the commission’s strategic priorities and incorporates feedback received in the annual community survey.”
The strategic priorities include completing existing projects, serving the county’s vulnerable and aging populations, developing a vision for a financially sustainable transit plan and focusing on innovative initiatives that enhance operational effectiveness and efficiency.
The FY 2022 mill levy is 18.514 mills for the county’s taxing levy. The budget has slight decreases to the mill levies for the Library Taxing District (3.896 mills) and Park and Recreation Taxing District (3.087 mills) to account for the pending exemptions. One mill equals $1 on every $1,000 of a homeowner’s assessed valuation.
The budget, with slightly more than $1 billion in expenditures and roughly $445.1 million in reserves, will fund more than 30 departments and five agencies that comprise Johnson County Government to support and protect a county population of 609,863 residents, according to the 2020 Census.
Highlights of the FY 2022 budget include:
* A total of 4,135.48 full-time equivalent (FTE) positions with 25 new FTEs, including:
o Three FTEs to the Med-Act Department
o A new homeless outreach manager for Johnson County Mental Health Center
o Six FTEs to the Sheriff’s Office to enhance security at the new Johnson County Courthouse
o A new Juvenile Services Center mental health clinician for the Department of Corrections
* A Capital Improvement Program (CIP) for 2022 approved projects totaling $161 million with estimated allocations including:
o $79.1 million for wastewater projects
o $17.7 million for capital projects by the Johnson County Park and Recreation District
o $16.8 million for the County Assistance Road System (CARS) program
o $14.8 million for the county’s Stormwater Management Program
o $4.4 million for transit projects
o $2.4 million for the county’s Bridge, Road and Culvert Program
o $1.7 million the Library Capital Replacement Program
o $1.6 million for airport projects
The CIP also lists $3 million for a new Household Hazardous Waste Facility (which needs to relocate due to major improvements planned for the Nelson Wastewater Treatment Plant where it currently resides) and $3.8 million for a new Med-Act facility in Lenexa.
The budget includes an additional $250,000 for Aging Care Services for the Department of Aging and Human Services following $250,000 in the FY 2021 budget as well as an additional $1.53 million for micro-transit and approximately $400,000 to enhance county software, including a product that helped county staff build the COVID-19 dashboard.
By state law, Kansas counties must adopt and file their FY 2022 Budget with the County Clerk, which in Johnson County is the Department of Treasury, Taxation and Vehicles, by Oct. 1 if they exceed the revenue neutral rate.
The final setting of the FY 2022 mill levy will be established by the end of October with the latest property valuations by the Department of Treasury, Taxation and Vehicles. The mill levy calculations are only for Johnson County Government and do not include other taxing entities, such as the state of Kansas, cities or townships and school districts. County Government traditionally represents approximately 15% of annual property tax statements.
The county’s fiscal year begins Jan.1, 2022. Details about the FY 2022 Budget are available online at jocogov.org.