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FY 2014 Budget Discussion to Begin Today

Today will begin the first day of our Budget Review Process for the Proposed FY 2014 Budget at 8 AM. Today is the first of two two Saturday budget worksessions.

You can view the session on either Comcast-channel 71 or FiOS-channel 25. Today, we will review the following items/departments:

  • City Manager’s Introduction to include the Financial and Budget Policies
  • General Revenue Fund
  • Engineering
  • Public Works
  • Public Services

If time permits we will review Administration.

Here is a brief summation of the budget process from the City Manager’s notes….

The City Manager instructed departments to limit non-personnel operating expenditure increases to 0%.

There was a 5.6% increase in property tax rates, from $0.322 to $0.34 for real property and from$0.805 to $0.85 for personal property per $100 of assessed valuation, is proposed,primarily due to the 9.76% decrease in FY 2014 real property assessments (prior to application of the homestead tax credit). This is the first property tax rate increase in 6 years.

Even with the proposed increase in property tax rates, budgeted property tax revenue only increased $37,193 due to the real property assessment decrease (first year of a new triennial assessment for District 21 ), inclusion of a half-year assessment for the Domain College Park annexed property and 1 0% annual depreciation on personal property tax assessments.

Intergovernmental revenues (admission & amusement and hotel/motel taxes) and other revenue sources are fairly flat. State highway user tax revenue, reduced by approximately 89% in FY 2010, increased for FY 2014 only to $252,774. Estimated speed enforcement camera revenue decreased $305,000 from FY 2013.

Total operating revenues increased $85,914 or 0.6% from the FY 2013adjusted budget. As of July 1, 2012 the City had $5,944,767 in the unassigned reserve. A proposed $1,5000,000 FY 2013 budget amendment would reduce that amount to $4,444,767 to fund a City Hall Expansion. The current unassigned reserve balance represents 40.57 per cent of the requested FY 2014 operating budget, in excess of the Charter-mandated goal of 25%. The proposed FY 2013 budget amendment for City Hall expansion would reduce the unassigned reserve to 30.33%

A separate work session review of the Capitol Improvement Program( C.I.P) has not yet scheduled; however, it may be incorporated into the 2 existing work sessions. The budget ordinance is scheduled for introduction on Tuesday, April 23.

The public hearing on the operating and capital budget is scheduled for Tuesday, May 14. No constant yield tax rate public hearing is required as the proposed real property tax rate of $0.34 does not exceed the constant yield rate tax rate calculated by SDAT of $0.3447.

We are scheduled to adopt the FY 2014 adopted budget ordinance on Tuesday, May 28 for the budget to go into effect on July 1, 2013.

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