The Cobb Board of Commissioners passed a fiscal year 2014 budget on Tuesday that includes a slight drop in property taxes and factors in pay increases for county employees.
The $816.7 million total also includes a water fund transfer of $18.2 million that generated most of the discussion, and prompted one dissenting vote.
The new budget, which goes into effect Oct. 1, includes performance-based pay raises for county employees of up to 3 percent.
Cobb homeowners will get a slight break in property tax rates, as the budget contains a reduction of 0.2 mills to 7.02 mills.
District 2 Cobb Commissioner Bob Ott, who represents East Cobb and the Smyrna-Vinings area, voted against the budget package (see attached PDF), continuing his protests against a water transfer that he said will lead to higher water rates.
The transfer total represents about 8 percent of the water department revenues, less than the 10 percent the board has set as a limit.
"I applaud the fact that it has come down," Ott said, "but there's not been any discussion about a commitment to bring it down further."
Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee said the budget is "fiscally sound. Is it perfect? Probably not. It probably won't ever be."