Albert Rukwaro
Special to The Gardner News
Gardner city’s taxable assessed valuation increased by 8.9 percent in the last year; however the estimated 2020 mill levy will remain at 20.720, Mathew Wolff, finance director, said at a council meeting June 17.
Wolff presented a revised 2019-2020 biennial budget estimate during the meeting.
The 2020 budget includes a citywide three percent merit compensation placeholder of $255,000 and a planned 3.7 percent water rate increase.
“There is no significant commercial development revenue included in the biennial forecast period, as the associated revenue will lag until anticipated development becomes reality or projects under construction are complete,” he said.
Wolff projected that the 2020 general fund balance will be 23 percent and declared the budget to be “structurally sound as represented by adequate reserves in both tax levy funds and the utility funds.”
He said the budget is future oriented including bolstering funding for development partners and initiatives to enhance tourism, marketing and entrepreneurship.
According to Wollf, the city’s general fund will see 2020 revenues go up by four percent to 13,657,000 with estimated expenditures of $13,977,400, a three percent increase.
The city will experience a shortfall of $320,400 in the coming year, according to the estimates.
Most of the city’s revenues will come from taxes and service charges while the police department will account for the highest expenditure item.
During the meeting, the council received an audit report from Mike Lowry of Allen, Gibbs and Houlik, a Wichita auditing services firm.
In other business:
– the city’s finance department received the distinguished budget presentation award from the Government Finance officers association.
– Adopted an amended resolution establishing policies for the creation and operation of citizen advisory committees
– Accepted the recommendations of the planning commission on the dedication of right of way and easements on the final plat for Warren Place events center.