Lexington County residents will dig a little deeper into their wallets this fall mainly for public safety improvements and better roads.
Property taxes will rise slightly under a $140.5 million spending plan that received tentative County Council approval Tuesday.
The tax bill on a home valued at $100,000 will rise $2.13, primarily to pay for six additional jail guards, three more firefighters and a new crew for resurfacing roads.
Those additions are needed to keep pace with steady growth, council chairman Todd Cullum of Cayce said.
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The tax hike is one of the smallest in the past decade, partly because $4 million in savings were used.
“I don’t know how much more reasonable we can get,” Cullum said.
Approval of the spending plan came after council members were told that a poll this spring found residents are generally satisfied with county services.
Nearly 4,300 of the county’s 280,000 residents took part in the survey. The $71,750 poll is similar to customer satisfaction surveys taken for businesses, but it’s a first for county officials.
The additional jail guards are intended to help cope with the demand of caring for nearly 800 prisoners in a jail designed for 599.
Officials also want to reduce the level by settling charges sooner for prisoners arrested for nonviolent offenses.
The new road crew will be assigned to keep many side roads in better conditions among rising traffic levels, a top concern of residents in the survey.
Tim Flach: 803-771-8483