WICHITA COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — It’s that time of year again, the Wichita County Commissioners are tasked with getting the 2023 tax rate and budget approved.

“What we have to do is balance the needs of the county versus the ability of the taxpayer to pay for it,” Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom said.

Gossom says his office has been spending plenty of time analyzing this year’s budget, to ensure the numbers paint a valid picture for what things should look like for the county. He says they’re also assessing tax rates that shouldn’t put too much of a strain on county residents.

“We are actually down 3.84 cents in our proposed rate than what we were last year. That proposed rate is .5754 per hundred dollars of valuation,” Gossom said.

All in all, the commissioners’ court says the team is proposing a balanced budget with a small tax increase of $0.034 per $100 dollars of valuation for citizens, which Gossom says is still a $0.041 savings from the no new tax rate.

“What we’re proposing this year, if you’ve had a home that was $150 value and then for this year it went up to $165, you would pay $29.08 I believe it is, less than $30 for that increase,” Gossom said.

A proposal they hope aims to be fair for everyone.

“We’ve always had a deal of prioritizing that. We’ve never taxed for the full budget of the county we’ve always maintained significant reserves,” Gossom said.

Something county commissioners hope to continue doing for the 2023 fiscal year.

Now the next step is next Tuesday, Sept. 6, when commissioners go over the budget again and actually take the vote on the budget and the tax rate. For a full look at the proposed annual budget document, you can click here.