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The City’s annual budget process is slated to get underway this week with the first of a series of planned budget workshops scheduled to take place on Tuesday, April 26th at 5:30 p.m. in the City Council Chamber.

The proposed FY2023 Budget, which can be found on the City’s website at, was presented to the Council earlier this month and will be advertised for its first public hearing on May 11.

Overall, the City is proposing a roughly $105 million operating budget, which includes $4 million in new debt service for the new Rogers High School and Pell School addition.

That investment is expected to necessitate a 3.0 percent increase in the City’s residential and commercial tax rates over FY2022.

As outlined in a budget letter from the City Manager, while Newport’s economy has largely bounced back from pandemic-related restrictions, challenges remain.

The robust housing market, which has generated additional revenue for the City, is also seen as a cause for concern. The average assessed value of a single-family home is over $700,000 and housing inventory for purchase remains persistently low. The concern on the part of the Administration is that the cost of housing may be driving out residents and families.

Over the last 12 months, the Council and administration have taken steps to address some of the issues related to housing, including zoning restrictions related to short-term rentals and establishing a tax relief ad hoc committee to review taxation and exemption regulations and options. However, the availability, quality, and affordability of housing stock are key elements affecting the quality of life for all citizens and the City administration will continue to evaluate housing affordability and provide policy recommendations to the City Council.

Supply chain issues and rising inflation are also concerns for the City. In addition to the rising cost of the new Rogers High School, every capital project, supply purchase, and basic operating costs are all affected by inflation and long delays in getting supplies and equipment.

Meanwhile, like most other organizations, the City is having difficulty filling vacant positions, particularly in the AFSCME bargaining unit and seasonal and temporary positions. As of March 23, 2022, we have 3 full-time positions vacant in utilities, 5 full-time vacancies in public services, 2 full-time vacancies in planning, 2 full-time vacancies in finance, 5 full-time vacancies in police and 7 full-time vacancies in fire.

Still, the proposed budget includes significant allocations towards the City Council’s goal of improving the City’s infrastructure, including making investments in roads, school facilities, seawall repairs, parks and playground facilities, harbor facilities, parking, water system needs and water pollution control (WPC) and wastewater needs.

The entire proposed budget, along with a list of upcoming workshops, can be found online at Workshops are open to the public and additional departmental spending details are expected to be released in the coming weeks.

Tuesday, April 26th 5:30 p.m. City Council Chamber
Budget Overview, Capital Projects, Planning & Economic Development, Zoning & Inspections

Thursday, April 28th at 5:30 p.m. City Council Chamber
Joint Session with the School Committee on School Budget

Thursday, May 5th at 5:30 p.m. City Council Chamber
Police and Parking Fund, Fire, Public Services, Harbor Fund

Monday, May 16th at 5:30 p.m. City Council Chamber
Water and Water Pollution Control

City of Newport

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