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Board of Aldermen Evaluate The Proposed Budget For 2010

By Beth Hunolt

The December meeting for the City of Edina’s Board of Aldermen met in regular open session Monday, December 14th, at Edina City Hall. Mayor Davey Strickler called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm. and guided the attendants in an invocation, which was then followed by the Pledge of Allegiance. The minutes from the November city council meeting as well as the Treasurer’s report was approved by the board. Peggy Collins CPA then went over the proposed city budget for 2010. In Collins’ overview she states the following; REVENUES Street Maintenance Fund and Reserve and Improvement Fund: Sales Tax Revenue has previously been split with 1/3 to the General Fund, 1/3 to the Street Maintenance Fund and 1/3 to the Reserve and Improvement Fund. This year since statues do not allow budgeted expenditures to exceed budgeted revenues plus fund balance, the 1/3 which had been placed in the Reserve and Improvements Fund has been mobbed to the Street Maintenance Fund. Therefore, Sales Tax Revenue has been budgeted 1/3 to the General Fund and 2/3 to the Street Maintenance Fund. Other options are to place on the ballot a request to transfer funds from the Special Light Fund (restricted fund as to use of funds), which has a fund balance of approximately $220,000, or to pay Street Maintenance Expenses from another unrestricted fund. Water Fund: The engineer report anticipates a $12,000 loss in water sales due to Knox County Nursing Home switching from water service with Edina and going to Knox County Water District. This loss was budgeted for 2010. EXPENDITURES The health insurance premium for city employees increased approximately 9.97% for 2010. A salary increase of 3% per hour increase for all city employees is included in the budget but has not been approved by the council. A $.50 per hour raise is recommended for two city employees since both employees completed additional licensing in February of 2009 with no additional raise. FUND BALANCES General Fund: A $28,000 deficit of expenditures over revenue has been budgeted for 2010 in the General Fund. Street Maintenance Fund – During 2009 the Street Maintenance Funds were depleted and $25, 000 in street repairs was paid from the Reserve and Replacement Fund in preserve a small balance in the fund. For 2010 it will be necessary to find other sources of funds or pay expenditures from another unrestricted fund since current budgeted revenues are not adequate to pay current budget expenditures Recreation Fund: The main source of revenue for the Recreation Fund is the cigarette tax. The expenditures in this fund have been exceeding the revenue for several years. The fund balance in this fund could be depleted in two or three years based on past history and budgeted amounts. Reserve and Improvements Fund: The fund balance is currently almost $320,000 in the Reserve and Improvement Fund. This fund is used for the replacement of capital outlay. For 2010 a deficit of expenditures over revenues of $23,900 is budgeted. Water and Sewer Fund: The Water and Sewer Funds have been combined since the beginning even though revenue and expenses are tracked. If the sewer revenues are expenditures were separated out, a deficit has been shown for several years due to capital outlay. The current rates are not allowing for capital outlay replacement. Sanitation Fund: An increase in landfill charges in the Sanitation Fund is included in the budget, since the cost has increased by $1.50 a ton. CAPITAL OUTLAY The following capital outlay requests are included in the 2010 budget, but the decision as to whether to spend the funds will be made by the city council. Reserve and Improvements Pole Barn $50,000 Sewer Fund $10,000 W&S Depreciation And Replacement Sewer Line Replacement $78,00 Total $138,000 Transfers: A monthly amount of $1650 has been budgeted to be transferred from the Water and Sewer operating Fund to the Water & Sewer Depreciation & Replacement Fund to cover future capital outlay again this year. The board of Aldermen passed the proposed 2010 budget after some debate over the 3% pay rise for the city employees with a 5 fore and 1 against roll call vote. The city board then voted to approve the authorization of payment of bills. The motion passed with a unanimous vote. Brad Eidel reported that the laboratory would need re-roofed. He said that he noticed that two tiles had fell and the roof was leaking. Eidel told the board he had someone coming to look at it the first part of the year. Mr. Eidel estimates that the repairs will be around $10,000. Mike Wright reported to the board that things were going good and he had been looking at some applicants to fill the department’s vacant position. Mr. Wright and the Board of Aldermen had discussed future plans for the city’s park. The area’s that were agreed to be in need of the most attention include: the restrooms, the pavilions and the a couple areas of the fence. The board and Mr. Wright also discussed the possibility of mulch being placed around some of the play equipment. Mayor Davey Strickler then read aloud in it’s entirety a letter to the City of Edina from a seasonal resident of Edina. The citizen was upset that he had been charge a trash service fee on his recent bill. Morgret Gibson then stated that in the past seasonal residents were not charged trash fees because most vacationers don’t use very much water and the trash fees were added to the customer’s bill because the residency’s water usage rate had increased to more than that of a seasonal resident. The City of Edina’s current ordinance states that if a residence has a water meter they must pay a mandatory trash fee of $14.75. The motion was made to amend the city’s current ordinance to a suggested vacationer rate that all seasonal guests could be charged. Morgret Gibson and Betty Morgret were appointed to make a trash amendment proposal to add to the city’s ordinance. A request was made to extend the hours of The Blue Room and The VFW on Thursday, December 31st, New Year’s Eve, from 12 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. The motion passed with an unanimous vote. The Board of Aldermen for the City of Edina then adjourned their December meeting at 8:30 p.m.