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The City of Carthage is proposing a flat budget and tax rate this year.

The City of Carthage adopted a $12.6 million budget and voted to keep its tax rate flat at $0.5894 per $100 valuation at its Monday meeting.

The budget includes about a $300,000 deficit, with City Manager Steve Williams previously saying that deficit is excess sales tax revenue the city collected this year and will spend on streets next year.

The city is collecting about three percent less in property taxes because the total tax levy on all properties went down. The average homeowner whose house is valued at $90,886, however, will see an increase of about $16 on their taxes because the average homestead taxable value went up. The proposed budget includes a two percent across-the-board raise for employees. The general fund will decrease by about $181,000, but much of that is because the city purchased a fire truck last year and no longer needs that budget item.

The biggest item in the general fund, which will total about $7.6 million, was road repairs. The water and sewer fund is pretty much the same as last year with a total of $5 million.

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Carthage native Meredith Shamburger has worked for the Panola Watchman since 2018. Before that, she worked at sister papers in Longview and Marshall; the Dallas Morning News; and The Daily Voice, a hyperlocal news company in Westchester County, New York.