Wilmore may need to think conservatively when making decisions due to its razor-thin 2012-’13 budget, but in general, the council and finance director Hayley Ellis are confident that city can maintain services and continue to make new improvements throughout the coming year.
As of Monday night’s city council meeting, the city has transferred approximately 59 percent of its surplus fund ($475,688) to the general fund.
By suspending the rules and moving it to an immediate action, the council voted unanimously to approve the request by Ellis to transfer $80,000 into the budget, leaving $334,312 in the surplus fund.
In total, the surplus of the budget was at $810,000, which was meant to last through the end of the fiscal year — June 30, 2013.
“In our general fund, most of our cash comes from our property tax, which hasn’t gone out yet,” Ellis said. “So we probably won’t have to make another transfer for a little while because of the property-tax revenue that will be coming in, plus this quarter’s revenue, including insurance and franchise.”
Those revenue streams for Wilmore will start accumulating in late October, Ellis said. Property taxes are usually mailed by the end of October and often paid in full by January.
“(Compared to last year), it’s hard to tell because it varies; the different funds owe each other money, and that changes year to year,” she said.
Wilmore is also looking at $36,000 deficit so far this year in the budget due to non-budgeted expenses, but the cost is being carried by the fund balance, Ellis said. The fund balance is similar to a retained-earnings account maintained by the city’s equity.
“It’s kind of like spending out of a saving account, money set aside,” she said.
On Monday night, the council also approved another $31,000 to come out of the Renewal, Replacement and Extension fund (RR&E), which is set up for water and sewer pipes as well as water quality.
Any time a new home is built, 85 percent of the all water sewer tap fees goes to capital improvements, with 15 percent going into the operating funds.
Wilmore utilities director Dave Carlstedt requested $23,000 Monday night to set up a mechanical mixer in the Asbury water tower that will improve the quality of water pumped out through the city.
He also requested $8,000 to go toward repairing a “sagging” sewer line adjacent to Epworth Avenue.
Both requests were approved and as of Monday night, $184,489 remained in the RR&E account.