Richmond VA > City Council > Budget

Last Updated: 2014-11-20

We, as Richmond Residents, pool our resources in order to own and operate our citizen-run government and decide what public services we want to invest in; the priority (investment levels) for these services; and, how we pay for them.

Examples of some of our services are the management, oversight and delivery of such things as clean/safe drinking water; paved streets, bridges, sidewalks; public parks; animal protection; trash/sewage removal; police/firefighting/laws/courts/rescue; public transportation; and, educating our children. Together, we own, operate, use and benefit from these services on a daily basis.

As the governing body of Richmond, Richmond City Council represents us in establishing the government services we want; sets priority/investment levels; and, identifies ways to help pay for them.

In order to set investments levels, each year Richmond City Council establishes an official Richmond Government Budget that is funded from state, local and federal fees/taxes.

Richmond City Council’s ongoing budget analysis and deliberation intensify from August through May and incorporate more than two dozen public meetings, hearings and work sessions. It includes the Mayor submitting to Council a proposal, which it amends to establish an official Richmond Government Budget.

Richmond’s government operates on a two-year fiscal plan (budget) that is amended every year. The Richmond Government Budget takes the form of Ordinances that are approved each May for an upcoming Fiscal Year, which runs from July 1 to June 30 annually. During the year, the budget is also amended and/or updated, as requested by the Mayor and approved by Council.

Richmond City Council’s Budget Ordinances are available for review in the Richmond City Council Office of the City Clerk, located on the 2nd floor of Richmond City Hall, 900 E. Broad Street; 804.646.7955 (tel).

Richmond Real Estate Assessments and Richmond Real Estate Tax Rates

Richmond residents have determined an equitable way to help pay for some of our local government is to assess real estate value in our city and for owners to contribute funds, based on a percentage of it.

To help ensure fairness, the Richmond City Council Office of the Assessor of Real Estate performs annual real estate assessments to determine fair market value. Each year the fair market value of real estate in the city is assessed and Richmond City Council sets an annual Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate. The rate is a percentage, based on $100 of value, that each real estate owner will contribute to help pay for government services in the city. Real estate owners contribute their share, based on the value of their real estate. For example, if a person owns $100,000 in real estate and the tax rate is $1.20 per $100 of assessed real estate property value; their share is $1,200 for that year.

The Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate, represents about 15 percent of the annual Richmond Government Budget.

As a capital city, Richmond (in contrast to other localities) includes substantial state/federal government, nonprofit and church owned real estate that receive local government services but pay no taxes.

For example: The 2012 value of Richmond Real Estate was $25.7 billion. Of this, more than $6 billion (23 %), was not taxed. At a tax rate of $1.20 (per $100 in value), non-taxed real estate represented $72.5 million in lost revenue that year. As each penny of our real estate tax rate represents about $2 million in revenue, it can be said that non-taxed real estate ads about 36 cents to our Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate.

As an historic city, Richmond also provides real estate tax abatements to encourage rehabilitation of older residential, multi-family and commercial buildings. The value of abated real estate for 2014 was $1.8 billion; representing $21.6 million in lost revenue/adding 11 cents to our Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate.

Each year, non-taxed/abated real estate re-presents nearly $100 mil. in lost revenue/47 cents added to the Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate.

The historic Richmond Real Estate Tax Rates are included in the Richmond City Council Official Fiscal Year Richmond Government Budget Booklet (below).

Richmond City Government Budget

Fiscal Year 2015

Richmond City Council Official Fiscal Year 2015 Richmond Government Budget Booklet

Fiscal Year 2014

Richmond City Council Official Fiscal Year 2014 Richmond Government Budget Booklet

Fiscal Year 2013

Richmond City Council Official Fiscal Year 2013 Richmond Government Budget Summary Booklet

Some Highlights include the following:

  • Richmond City Council kept Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate lowest in 30 years.
  • Richmond City Council cut Richmond Government Department spending by $3.7 million.

Fiscal Year 2012

Richmond City Council Official Fiscal Year 2012 Richmond Government Budget Summary Booklet

Fiscal Year 2011

Our Richmond City Government Budget for FY 2011, summarized in the 2011 Richmond City Government Budget Fiscal Year 2011 Citizen Budget Summary Booklet, is $1,370,402,375. It was approved and adopted by Council on May 24, 2010. It is effective July 1, 2010-June 30, 2011.

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Some Highlights include the following:

  • Council's approved Richmond City Government Budget for FY 2011 is more than $82 million less than FY2010, which was more than $36 million less than FY2009, for a three year total Richmond City Government Budget reduction of more than $118 Million.
  • Council cut Mayor's proposed FY 2011 budget by an additional $5.2 million ($4.6 million of which was the result in state revenue reductions to Richmond Public Schools).
  • Council kept the Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate the lowest in more than 30 years, down $.92 since 1980.
  • Council approved splitting up the payments of Richmond Real Estate Taxes and, beginning in 2011, they will be divided in two and collected two times a year (January and July) instead of all at once. This move will decrease interest costs needed when borrowing money to pay for services until tax collections are made.
  • Council added additional $2.5 Million for repairs and maintenance for Richmond Public Schools.
  • Council approved a loan program for local small businesses/community development.

2011 Richmond City Government Budget Fiscal Year 2011 Citizen Budget Summary Booklet

2011 Richmond City Council Official Budget and Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate Meetings - News Council Budget Review 3.10.10

Richmond City Government Budget

Fiscal Year 2010

Our Richmond City Government Budget for FY 2010, summarized in the Richmond City Government Budget Fiscal Year 2010 Citizen Budget Summary Booklet, was $1,452,474,815. It was approved and adopted by Council on May 24, 2010. It is effective July 1, 2010-June 30, 2011.

2010 Richmond City Government Budget Fiscal Year 2010 Citizen Budget Summary Booklet

2010 Richmond City Council Official Budget and Richmond Real Estate Tax Rate Meetings

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