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Learn about City of Sugar Land, including Featured News, Key Projects, and The Team.
Sugar Land, located in eastern Fort Bend County, is approximately 20 miles southwest of downtown Houston. It was founded as a sugar plantation in the mid-1800s and incorporated in 1959.
A full-service municipality, Sugar Land, provides the highest quality of affordable services to meet the needs of its residents. Master-planned communities and welcoming neighborhoods enhance home values and create a sense of belonging. The community offers outstanding schools, libraries, civic organizations and other resources that make Sugar Land a great place to work, live and raise a family.
Numerous high-profile regional and international corporations have chosen Sugar Land as a corporate home, including Minute Maid, Schlumberger, Tramontina USA, Fluor Corporation, Bechtel Equipment Operations, Noble Drilling, Money Management International and Aetna. Sugar Land's aggressive economic development program has created a business-friendly environment, one that includes a variety of incentives, including a corporate aviation facility.
During the meeting, the discussion focused upon the proposed fiscal year 2023-24 budget and five-year capital improvement program 2024-28, which included funds and forecasts for the city budget, according to detailed city documents.
The proposed budget for FY 2023-24 includes $288 million for operations and $65 million for capital projects. Additionally, the Five-Year Capital Improvement Program outlines a total investment of $291 million, with $65 million allocated for projects in FY 2023-24.
However, as of August, City Council members have not specified what those “capital projects” will be.
Only the first year of the capital improvement program would be funded in the annual budget, while the subsequent years are for planning purposes and are subject to change based on the available information at the time or the needs of the community, according to city officials' statements during the meeting.
The proposed budget and capital improvement program will undergo further review through a series of workshops throughout August. Moreover, there will be a public hearing scheduled Aug. 15 where residents can provide their feedback on the proposed budget.
Another public hearing specifically addressing the proposed tax rate will take place Sept. 12. The final adoption of the budget and tax rate is slated for Sept. 19 to comply with the city charter standards, which requires the budget to be approved by Sept. 23, according to the city website.
City Council encourages active citizen engagement in the budget review process. To address the council, residents must complete a request to speak form and submit it to the city secretary before the start of the meeting. Each speaker is limited to three minutes, with translations provided for speakers requiring a translator.
For more information about the proposed budget and supporting documentation, residents can visit the city's official website, www.sugarlandtx.gov, and access the meeting agendas.
Sugar Land city officials presented a proposed budget of $353 million for fiscal year 2023-24, which will begin Oct. 1. The new budget allocation includes $288 million for operational expenses and $65 million for various capital projects, according to a news release.
The primary focus of the new budget is to ensure the city's continued financial and operational stability, aiming for long-term sustainability, according to a city news release. The goal is to balance investments in both operations and capital funding to enhance resiliency for FY 2023-24 and beyond, according to the release.
Sugar Land City Manager Michael Goodrum expressed his vision for the city's future.
“Our proposed budget emphasizes our pursuit of becoming trailblazers as we seek to provide city residents and businesses a life better than they can even imagine,” he said.
The proposed budget centers on the following “strategic outcomes” as prioritized and labeled by the Sugar Land City Council, according to the news release:
To mitigate the impact of an anticipated tax rate increase, Sugar Land raised the homestead exemption to 15% for 2023, as previously reported by Community Impact.
This exemption increase will partially counterbalance the expected tax rate rise of approximately $0.035-$0.35 per $100 valuation, necessary to implement voter-approved bond projects, according to the release.
Additionally, the proposed capital improvement program for 2024-28 amounts to $291 million with $65 million allocated for the FY 2023-24 budget. This includes funding for two 2019 bond projects: the Emergency operations center/public safety dispatch and public safety facilities rehabilitation. Furthermore, strategic funding is provided for other critical projects addressing public safety and mobility priorities, according to the release.
Additionally, the rate for residential solid waste services is $19.85 per month, and it will increase by 99 cents to $20.84 per month starting in January.
To involve the community in the budgetary process, a series of budget workshops open to the public will be conducted throughout August at Sugar Land City Hall. Public hearings are scheduled until the end of September, where residents can provide feedback on the proposed budget and tax rate before their final approval. As per the city charter, the budget adoption must be completed by Sugar Land City Council no later than Sept. 25.
Both S&P and Fitch Ratings recently reviewed the City's credit rating for the waterworks and sewer system revenue bonds and affirmed their 'AA' rating. The outlook for the system is stable.