A man on a computer and calculator working out his business budget strategy.

Garfield County adopts 2024 budget

Board green-lights temporary mill levy credit to provide relief for taxpayers

December 13, 2023

Garfield County has adopted its 2024 proposed budget, which includes a projected $131.4 million in expenditures and $128.2 million in revenues, and an estimated $86.8 million year-end fund balance. The county also approved a temporary mill levy credit, effectively reducing mills for 2024 from 13.655 to 13.155.

The 2024 adopted budget features a $4.1 million decrease in revenues and a $5.5 million decrease in expenditures from the county’s proposed budget. It includes a balanced operating budget, with $7.1 million more in revenues over expenditures, and shows a supplemental increase in revenues of $5.5 million over the 2023 adopted budget.

Proposed capital expenses and discretionary items, such as grants, will draw down the county’s fund balance by an estimated $3.1 million in 2024.

The Board of County Commissioners approved the county’s mill levy of 13.655 mills, as well as the 2024 temporary mill levy credit, which is only in effect for one year. This credit does not change the mill levy, but rather reduces the amount of property tax the county collects in 2024.

The mill levy credit reduces county revenues and provides some relief for property owners dealing with increased property taxes due to surging values. Senate Bill 23B-001, which was passed in a special session, lowered the state’s assessment rate from 6.765 to 6.7 percent, further reducing the county’s revenues by approximately $1 million.

Both the 2024 adopted budget and temporary mill levy credit were approved unanimously, 3-0.

“The county’s temporary mill levy credit will help decrease property taxes for all property owners, including residential, oil and gas, commercial, agricultural, and vacant land,” said Commissioner Tom Jankovsky. “We’re 13 mills out of 80 (in the Glenwood Springs area), and we have no control over those other 67 mills. That’s primarily the school district, but it’s also the library district, Colorado Mountain College, water and fire districts, and a hospital district in the west end of the county. It’s up to those individual boards that run the districts to make their decisions on whether they’ll reduce their mills.”