Henderson city officials plan to hire 56 full-time employees to expand public services for a growing population that recently topped 300,000, according to its $541 million tentative budget for 2017-18.
The city is expected to fund nine firefighters to staff the new fire station in Inspirada, which is set to open in the fall, and 25 new police officers paid for through the More Cops initiative and the Clark County Crime Prevention Act of 2016.
Also, the city plans to hire three public work employees and four correction officers and a jail analyst at the Henderson Detention Center. The rest of the hires will be in the water and sewer department and development services center.
More than 58 percent of the $252 million operating budget will be used to invest in public safety, which includes infrastructure such as streets and parks and recreation programs.
General government will use 17.7 percent of the budget, and culture and recreation will use 15.3 percent. Judicial, public works and community support will receive less than 5 percent each.
“It’s fair to say that we’re seeing modest revenue growth, but with the population increase, we’re still looking for creative ways to provide quality services,” chief financial officer Richard Derrick said.
Despite a 15 percent increase in population, spending levels in the budget are still below those from fiscal year 2010, according to finance director Jim McIntosh.
“The city continues to provide a level of service that it needs to provide to its citizens all while operating within its revenues,” McIntosh said. “The city is not fully recovered, but it’s recovering.”
McIntosh also touted the city on having the lowest property tax rate for 27 years at 71 cents per $100 of assessed value and providing efficient public services while maintaining one of the lowest employee-to-citizen ratios.
By the end of the year, the city is expected to grow by more than 10,000 people.
The total $541 million includes the operating budget with other funds such as the taxpayer-approved sales tax to pay for police officers and the city’s utility fund.
Fiscal year 2017-18 starts July 1.
A public comment session regarding the budget is set for the City Council meeting at 6 p.m. May 16.
Contact Sandy Lopez at email@example.com or 702-383-4686. Follow @JournalismSandy on Twitter.