Budget

Fiscal Year 2021-2022 Adopted Budget

The New Hanover County Board of Commissioners adopted a $458 million balanced budget for Fiscal Year 2021-2022 at its meeting June 7. The adopted budget begins July 1, and decreases the tax rate from 55.5 cents to 47.5 cents per $100 value. Learn more about the important investments this budget makes to benefit everyone in the community at News.NHCgov.com, and view the Adopted Budget in Brief here.

In addition to the budget’s investments, the county will utilize additional funding through the federal American Rescue Plan to strengthen the community through broadband access, mortgage assistance, job training, sewer and water infrastructure, afterschool transportation for public school students to tutoring and other programs, mental health support, affordable housing, rental assistance, business and nonprofit grants, and more. An overview of this funding can be viewed here.

The FY 21-22 recommended budget was presented to the Board of Commissioners on May 17 and a public hearing on the budget was held Monday, June 7. Following the public hearing, the Board of Commissioners approved the recommended budget with several changes, including the addition of Parks Resource Officers, Long Leaf Park modifications, and adjustments to non-county agency and economic development funding. The $457 million recommended budget and the $1 million in changes and additional funding brings the county’s approved budget to $458 million.

Recommended budget documents can be viewed below:

New Hanover County’s Fiscal Year 2020-2021 Budget was adopted by the Board of Commissioners on Monday, June 1 following public hearings. The adopted budget documents can be viewed below:


Below are several highlights in the FY20-21 adopted budget:

  • Provides a total of $112.2 million to New Hanover County Schools, including $2,907 per pupil, $1.6 million in capital, $487,422 for Pre-K expansion, demonstrating the county’s continued commitment to improving the quality of public education in New Hanover County.
  • Establishes a three-year pilot program for a Social Impact Fund, that will provide funding to identified community nonprofits, focused on demonstrated outcomes they achieve toward advancing the county’s strategy focused on kindergarten readiness, raising average wages in the county, and reducing overall substance use.
  • Funds more than $618,000 in strategic economic development initiatives that will encourage private investment, bring more diverse and higher-wage jobs, and enhance quality of life.
  • Supports $931,106 in funding for human service partners through the Non-County Agency funding application process. Additionally, $375,000 has been committed over the next five years to support the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina’s new facility in our county.
  • Maintains the fire services tax rate for residents in the unincorporated county at 7.75 cents and also keeps the landfill tip fee at $48 per ton.
  • Capital improvement projects including the construction of a sidewalk extension on Market Street and a multi‐purpose connection trail path along Middle Sound Loop Road; and Environmental Management capital projects like the final phase of the landfill gas-to-energy system.
  • Sustained emphasis on 1,839 county employees, providing job security, benefits, and market increases to salaries.

The FY20-21 balanced budget is $399.6 million, with the following fund amounts: 

  • General Fund is $350.8 million, an increase of 0.25 percent from the FY 2019-2020 adopted budget; included in the General Fund is debt service at $62.4 million, an increase of 3.5 percent from the FY 2019-2020 adopted budget.
  • Fire Service District Fund is $16.7 million, an increase of 3.8 percent from the FY 2019-2020 adopted budget.
  • Environmental Management Enterprise Fund is $24.3 million, an increase of 5.3 percent from the FY 2019-2020 adopted budget.

New Hanover County’s Fiscal Year 2020-2021 recommended balanced budget was presented to the Board of Commissioner on Monday, May 18. Recommended budget documents can be viewed below:

A public hearing on the recommended budget was held on Monday, June 1 and Commissioners adopted the budget following the hearing.

New Hanover County’s Fiscal Year 2019-2020 Budget was adopted by the Board of Commissioners on Monday, June 17 following public hearings. The adopted budget documents can be viewed below:

Changes made to the recommended budget, which were approved in the adopted budget include:

  • $7,000 added for Friends of Fort Fisher
  • $23,750 added for Girls Leadership Academy of Wilmington (GLOW NC)
  • Unemployment insurance reduced by $30,750
  • $486,000 added for the Healing Place treatment center, which will be financed through loan proceed

The recommended budget was presented to the board on May 20 and a public hearing on the budget was held Monday, June 3. View the presentation slides here.

The Board of Commissioners approved the recommended budget with few changes on June 17, which can be viewed in the Adopted Budget panel above.

Here are a few highlights of what is included in the FY19-20 Recommended Budget:

  • No tax increase, making it three years in a row that the county has either reduced or maintained the tax rate.
  • Increased funding for New Hanover County Schools, to include $2,900 per pupil (a $100 increase per student over last year) and $3.7 million in capital; for a total of $116.2 million to support public schools, which is a 6.9% increase in funding from last year. Read about the county’s funding to public schools here.
  • Transitions the responsibility of the Forensic Lab to New Hanover County from the City of Wilmington, with a 60/40 cost-sharing arrangement with the city.
  • Funds more than $3.3 million in strategic economic development initiatives that will encourage private investment, bring more diverse and higher-wage jobs, and enhance quality of life.
  • Invests in workforce housing in partnership with the City of Wilmington, including $45,000 for a workforce housing study.
  • Supports 29 human services community partners, as recommended by the Non-County Agency Funding Committee, for a total of $977,000.
  • Includes debt service payments for the construction of the Healing Place substance use treatment center.
  • Maintains the fire services tax rate for residents in the unincorporated county at 7.75 cents and also keeps the landfill tip fee at $48 per ton.
  • Provides a market and merit salary increase for all eligible county employees.

New Hanover County’s Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Budget was adopted by the Board of Commissioners on Monday, June 4 following public hearings. The adopted budget documents can be viewed below:

Additional budget documents, including the recommended budget presentation slides and the line item recommended budget, can be viewed in the additional panels on this webpage.

View archived budget documents »

Finance: 230 Government Center Dr, #165 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7187 • Fax 910-798-7806
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