Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Council Ratifies Proposed Budget - Fire Department Will Need to Shift Money Within Budget for Equipment

The City of Chubbuck Council approved unanimously the proposed budget that was 1.1% lower than the published budget printed in the Idaho State Journal.  The budgets, although very similar, had one difference, the $60,000 line item to help pay for new air apparatus for the Fire Department.  Both budgets had apportioned $147,000 for street maintenance which stayed intact.

City Clerk, Richard Morgan, stated that the levy rate will go down on this budget by about .0002 due to increased valuation on property.  In short, although the levy rate has gone down, if the valuation on your property has increased you may see an increase in taxes anyway.

Putting pressure on the City Finances are the increase in PERSI, health benefits, and fuel/energy costs.  Although areas had to be cut the City was still able to budget for raises for employees.

Councilman Josh Ellis assured me when I asked that the Fire Department would get the new air apparatus within this year.  I asked City Clerk Morgan how the $60,000 would be made up and he stated that it will come out of the Fire Department Budget so some tough choices will need to be made.

The current Council made a commitment to continue to fund street maintenance and Councilman Ellis said 5 miles of road is currently being worked on now.  When asked where the money came to do that work now since the street maintenance budget only has $30,000, Ellis was unsure.

Ellis has a cautious optimism that revenues for the City could increase by as much as $250,000 for FY 2015, however, only time will tell.