The Bedford town council adopted its fiscal year 2022 budget last week, along with a $5 increase to solid waste disposal fees. No other rates will increase for town residents.
The town’s general fund — made of taxpayer dollars — totals a little more than $9 million for the upcoming fiscal year.
Town council members slightly reduced the capital improvement projects from the general fund in earlier budgeting stages to increase salary for town police officers. Newly hired police officers would receive a starting salary of $40,000, and any current officers earning less than that would be brought up to the same salary.
No tax increases will be levied on town residents, except an increase of $5 in solid waste disposal fees. Currently, the residential solid waste cost is $20 for town residences with one cart, and $23 for town residences with two carts. County residences with one cart pay $22.47, and county residences with two carts pay $25.47.
The solid waste fee increase is the result of a combination of factors, town manager Bart Warner said. The town of Bedford, along with Bedford County, has had higher and consistent usage of its solid waste disposal services. The town border expansion, expected to take effect in July 2023, also will increase costs as more residents come within town limits and use solid waste disposal services.
Town council previously had discussed incremental increases in solid waste fees over several years, Warner said, but opted instead to impose the full increase at once.
No town residents spoke regarding the budget or solid waste fee increase.