What is a Municipal Budget?
A municipal, or local government, budget provides the City with a transparent spending plan that represents the City Council’s priorities and reflects available revenue.
The General Fund budget represents all of the “discretionary funds” that the City collects. Other funds are known as "restricted" funds and, by law, must be spent on specific services.
The City’s Fiscal Year (FY) runs from July 1 through June 30, and Concord adopts a Biennial Budget (two one-year budgets) every two years. The current budget covers FYs 2019-20 and 2020-21.
State law requires that cities operate under a balanced budget. Unlike the federal government, local government agencies are not allowed to "deficit spend."
For FY 2019-20, the City's adopted budget is $108 million. For FY 2020-21, the adopted budget is $110.7 million.
This chart shows the City's projected revenues for Fiscal Year 2019-20.
This chart shows the City's projected expenses for Fiscal Year 2019-20.
Two-Year Budget Passed
The Concord City Council voted unanimously on June 11, 2019 to approve the City's two-year operating budget. The balanced budget preserves funding for vital community services and maintains current service levels. However, as part of the City's efforts to reduce expenses, two permanent but vacant, full-time positions were eliminated.
The budget is balanced by relying on Concord's voter-approved local revenue source, Measure Q, as well as a portion of the General Fund reserves -- $3.8 million in year one, and $1.3 million in year two. By the end of year two, the City's reserve is projected to be 23% of its budget.
By Council policy, the target reserve level is 30% to cover three months of operations with a minimum threshold of 17% reserves.
Where Does My Sales Tax Go?
Sales taxes are the largest source of the City's general fund revenue, comprising 1/3 of the total general fund revenues received.
Concord's current sales tax rate is 8.75%. Of that amount, the state receives 6.25%, while the Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) and BART each receive 0.5%.
The City of Concord only receives 1% plus the 0.5% (or half-cent) for Measure Q, the voter-approved sales and use tax that is set to expire in 2025.
For example, for every $100 you spend on taxable goods in Concord, you pay $8.75 in sales tax. Of that $8.75, the City of Concord currently receives just $1.50.
Where Does My Property Tax Go?
Property taxes are the general fund's second largest revenue source, comprising more than ¼ of the general fund revenues the City receives.
As a California taxpayer, you pay the state base rate of 1% of the assessed value of your property for property taxes.
Of that 1%, schools receive 53%, special districts receive 21%, Contra Costa County receives 15%, and the City of Concord receives just 11% of that 1% you pay.
For example, if you currently pay $5,000 in property taxes, the City of Concord only receives $550 to help fund local government services, such as public safety, roads and park maintenance and recreation programming.