Mark Taylor
[email protected]
The Edgerton City Council adopted a 2012 budget on Aug. 11 that holds the mill levy at the 2011 property tax rate.
The city will levy an estimated 42.880 mills in 2012, the same tax rate levied in 2011.
One mill is equal to $1 for every $1,000 in assessed valuation.
As a result, the owner of a $150,000 home will pay about $739 in city taxes in 2012.
City Administrator Beth Linn, who started working on the budget shortly after being hired by the city in early July, said this year’s budget presented “several unique challenges.”
“First, the audit of financial records for 2010 has not been completed,” Linn wrote in a memo to the city council.  “This process is usually completed during the first quarter of the fiscal year to balance all accounts and provide the beginning balances for use in preparing the budget.”
As a result, capital improvements and equipment and street reserve funds will be fleshed out after the audit is completed.
Secondly, Linn said, the city switched financial record keeping systems in late 2010, and the 2011 budget was not included in the new software.
“The budget has been entered now, but comparisons of budget versus actual or historical information on expenditures and revenues is challenging because the data now exists in two financial systems,” she said.
Finally, Linn noted “significant staff turnover” during the last nine months. Former City Administrator David Dillner resigned earlier this year to take a job in Abilene, Kan., and retired county manager Mike Press filled in on the interim until Linn was hired mid-year.
“Current staff was not involved in the preparation of the 2011 budget,” Linn said.
Linn said the 2012 budget includes the same number of staff positions as in 2011. However, the 2012 budget includes salary increases due to the hiring of a new city administrator, and possible cost of living or increases for existing staff.
The council is expected to discuss those increases at a future meeting.
Linn said Edgerton’s general fund property values are down by about $1.353 million based on preliminary information from the county appraiser’s office.
As a result, last year’s mill levy will generate less revenue in 2012.
“In 2011, the mill rate of 42.880 was anticipated to generate $1.053 million,” Linn said.  “Based on preliminary valuations, a mill rate of 42.880 is anticipated to generate $994,925 in (2112) property taxes. A decline in revenue of $58,101.
Sales tax revenues are projected to come in a 98 percent of last year’s receipts.
Linn said no funds have been earmarked in 2012 for the city’s intermodal public infrastructure fund, based on projections from BNSF.
The intermodal is expected to open in late 2013. Thus far, one tenant has been named.
“If another tenant is announced that will open sooner and revenue is anticipated for 2012, city council may need to consider a budget amendment before the end of 2011,” Linn said.