HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — Hampton City Council has approved a fiscal year 2023 budget that will lower the real estate tax rate.

The budget, approved Wednesday by City Council, gives tax relief for residents. The relief includes a 6-cent decrease in the release estate tax rate (bringing it from $1.24 per $100 of assessed property value to $1.18).

Automobiles will be valued at 75% of their value for tax bills.

Fees will also stay the same.

The budget will allocate $268 million for schools and $314 million for city operations, including debt payments for city and school projects.

The budget will also give raises between 5% and 7% to staff, add new positions in important areas such as licensed commercial drivers and some skilled trades, fully fund the school’s budget request so teachers can get raises, and fund youth initiatives.

The budget was passed with just one change from the city manager’s original recommended FY2023 budget. The change deals with the grocery tax.

A Hampton city spokeswoman said the recommended budget anticipated the General Assembly would eliminate the sales tax on groceries.

However, as of Wednesday, legislators had not passed a state budget.

The Hampton budget has been amended to add revenue back in from the sales tax collected in the city. That revenue totals about $3.3 million.

If the General Assembly adopts a budget, City Council could eliminate that $3.3 from the city budget or spend the contingency if the state keeps the tax or allocates other money to localities to make up for lost funds.

“This allows us to maintain maximum flexibility since the city budget has to be passed without knowing what the state budget will contain,” the spokeswoman said.