Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sun Valley sets tentative budget

Increases planned for police, fire and street repair

Express Staff Writer

    Sun Valley set a proposed budget of just over $5,451,000 on Friday for fiscal year 2014, which starts on Oct. 1.
    The city cannot exceed the proposed budget amount, yet changes in funding from one department to another can take place during a final budget hearing on Aug. 1 at City Hall.
    The proposed 2014 budget includes $250,000 for the Sun Valley Marketing Alliance, the same amount as last year. The marketing organization had requested $350,000.
    The proposed budget includes a 1 percent increase in retirement contributions and a 3 percent increase to cover projected health insurance premium costs, for Police and Fire department employees.
    The budget includes an increase in $16,000 for Police and Fire department personnel “cross training” to enhance the city’s response to medical calls and high-traffic events. An additional $6,000 has been proposed to replace five workbook computers in the Police Department that are six years old.
    The Sun Valley Fire Department would see a funding increase of $26,950 for training, and $3,600 to provide Wi-Fi for iPads and for telephone purchases. An increase of $6,000 is proposed for landscaping improvements at the Elkhorn Fire Station. Another $5,000 is proposed to pay for new gear.
    It is proposed that in fiscal year 2014 the city utilize $124,158 of property tax funding, coupled with $45,842 from state highway user charges, to conduct $170,000 of chip-sealing on roads and paths at various locations around Sun Valley.
    Under the proposed budget, a transfer of $206,938 from the general fund unassigned fund balance would be made to the fixed asset fund in 2014 to replace two fire trucks (through lease-to-purchase agreements) and to replace radios and a computer server at City Hall.
    The budget would allocate $50,000 in grant funding and $25,000 in city funds to complete a $75,000 transportation plan in 2014.
    Also, $10,000 has been budgeted for maintenance of two workforce-housing units, which bring in a total of $15,600 each year in revenue. The remaining $5,600 would be set aside for future employee-housing benefits.
    The final public hearing on the 2014 budget will be held at 4 p.m. Aug. 1 at City Hall.

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