At its annual budget meeting, the Budget Committee of the Whole unanimously approved the city’s 2013 proposed budget. The budget increases $34,152 from 2012. That equals half of one percent out of a $6.4 million budget.
Despite the small increase, the 2013 city equalized value increased to $330,719,550 from $316,203,400, resulting in an equalized tax rate of 7.99. The equalized tax rate in 2012 was 8.21.
City expenditures decreased from 2012 to 2013 by $122,936.
Other expenditures increased by $157,615, for a net increase in expenditures of $34,679. The largest increase in expenditures is $68,992 for wages in 2013. A two percent wage increase for non-union employees falls into this category.
City revenues decreased from 2012 to 2013 by $13,487. This is from a decrease in state shared revenue of $5,992 and highway aid of $7,495. This represents a smaller drop from the previous year when state shared revenue decreased $60,000 and highway aid decreased $40,000.
Other revenues increased $46,106, for a net increase in revenues of $32,619. The largest revenue increase is $20,000 for library aid.
In a message prepared for the council by City Administrator Kent Hager, it was reported that the conservative budgeting has allowed the city to budget $340,000 for capital projects and equipment in 2013.
Hager also wrote, “There is one bright light at the end of this financial tunnel, and that is the pending closure of Tax Increment Finance District 2. When this happens, hopefully in 2015, we will have an opportunity to make some much needed improvements to our community assets. Planning for that time has already begun and needs to continue.”
Judy Radke, city treasurer/finance director, said the city is in “solid financial shape.” She also said that is due to the city having “conservative department heads who were willing to listen with open ears.”