Members of the public can present questions or concerns about Riley County’s 2021 budget at a July 27 budget hearing.

The Riley County Commission on Thursday signaled approval for a budget hearing, planned for 9 a.m. July 27 during a Monday county commission meeting. County budget and finance officer Tami Robison reviewed the budget Thursday with the commissioners.

Taxpayers are looking at a slightly lower bill from the Riley County government for 2021.

The proposed 2021 budget of $41.6 million is a slight increase from $41.5 million in 2020.

Commissioners are looking at a county property tax rate of 42.2 mills in 2021, down 0.87 mills from 43.07 in 2020, according to a county memo. A mill is $1 in tax for every $1,000 in assessed, taxable property value.

In 2020, a property owner who paid $495.30 in county taxes on a $100,000 home would pay $490.15 for a $101,000 home in 2021, using the average existing residential property value increase of 1% in Riley County.

Commissioners previously approved a 5% reduction in commissioner salaries for 2021 to help keep spending down during the coronavirus pandemic. This reduction is $10,091, lowering the total wages and benefits for the three commissioners, Ron Wells, Marvin Rodriguez and John Ford, from $201,812 to $191,721. Rodriguez was absent from Thursday’s meeting. Ford said Rodriguez’s wife was scheduled to have open heart surgery Thursday.

Each commissioner gets $67,270.66 in total compensation, which would be reduced to $63,907. Commissioners are considered full-time employees.