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Hickory’s Fiscal Year 2023-2024 Recommended Budget

City Manager Warren Wood delivered his Fiscal Year (FY) 2023-2024 Recommended Budget to the Hickory City Council on May 16. The Recommended Budget totals $136,914,727 for all City operations, capital improvements, and debt service requirements for the upcoming year. This represents an 8.5% increase over the current year’s budget.

Key components of the budget include:

  • General Fund (Main Operating Fund): A budget of $68,564,275 is recommended, which represents an 8.6% increase over the current year’s budget. The property tax rate for FY2023-2024 is recommended to be reduced from 62.75 cents to the revenue neutral property tax rate of 45.5 cents per $100 of assessed value. The recommended tax rate reflects the significant increase experienced in market-driven real estate values following the county-wide revaluation of real property. 
  • Water and Sewer Fund: An increase in water and sewer rates is recommended to improve infrastructure and maintain the enterprise fund’s self-sufficiency. This will equate to about a $2.35 per month increase on the average residential water and sewer bill.  
  • Solid Waste Fund: An increase of $1 is recommended to bring the monthly sanitation rate up to $27 per month for the upcoming fiscal year. This increase will help to offset increases in fuel and labor costs.

“Despite Hickory and our region's economic challenges between 2001 and 2013, we have since witnessed a steady economic upturn,” said Wood in his budget message. “The Inspiring Spaces Initiative's success and the strategic investments made through the City’s bond program have strengthened our economic position. The resulting private sector investments, job opportunities, and residential growth have contributed to the overall prosperity and economic well-being of the Hickory Metro area.” 

He added, “Hickory's economic growth shows no signs of tapering off or slowing down. With ongoing private sector projects, continued public infrastructure improvements, ample water and wastewater capacity, and the region's ability to attract new investments, we are well-positioned for sustained economic advancement. These positive indicators instill confidence in Hickory's future economic prospects. All of this has been made possible through City Council's vision and bold action.” 

The Hickory City Council welcomes public input and will hold a public hearing on the FY2023-2024 Recommended Budget on Tuesday, June 6, at 7 p.m., during its regular City Council meeting at the Julian G. Whitener Municipal Building. 

The full FY2023-2024 Recommended Budget is available for review online at

The recommended budget is balanced and prepared in accordance with the Local Government Budget and Fiscal Control Act and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.