Kingsford ending fiscal year with more revenue

KINGSFORD — Kingsford is finishing the 2018-19 fiscal year on a positive note.

The council Monday adopted three 2018-19 budget amendments from City Manager Anthony Edlebeck that increased revenue in three funds.

The general fund ended the year with total anticipated revenues of $4,099,527, up from the budgeted amount of $3,816,003. General fund expenditures were $3,805,348, down from the budgeted amount of $3,815,979.

Revenue was up in several areas of the general fund, Edlebeck said, including sales and use taxes, about $15,100; $33,010 from an insurance premium refund; $46,205 in equipment rental; and $19,356 in general interest.

The major street fund ended the year $29,391 above the budgeted amount. The local street fund had an increase of more than $101,000, due mainly to not being able to complete paving projects.

The council June 3 approved its 2019-20 budget that set a tax rate of 22.932 mills, or $22.93 per $1,000 of taxable value. The current rate is 22.868 mills, or $22.87 per $1,000 of taxable value.

The proposed levy breaks down to 18 mills for general operating, the same as the current rate; 3.331 mills for police and firefighters pensions, up from 3.232 mills, an increase of 0.099 mills; 1.102 mills for the public works facility debt, down 0.033 mills from the current 1.135 mills; and 0.5 mills dedicated for streets, the same as now.

City revenues from property taxes will total an estimated $2.946 million, about $31,000 more than in the 2018-19 budget year. The total of all taxable valuations is $128.4 million, representing an increase of $985,000.

The general fund budget totals $4.1 million, up $298,000 from a year ago. The increase is mainly for capital projects, including a $100,000 boost for alley paving; $20,000 for a phone system upgrade; $35,000 for public safety building renovations; and $180,000 to purchase a dump truck and plow.

The general fund balance is estimated at $1.85 million, up about $350,000 from what was projected a year ago. The city plans $200,000 in local street paving and $280,000 in major street paving.

In other business Monday, the council:

— Approved a resolution increasing non-union wages by 2.5%.

–Tabled a request to set up automatic payments for water bills. Some questions remained about costs and security. Edlebeck told the council he hadn’t had time to look into it more thoroughly and he had questions. The cost for the cyber insurance would be about $2,400, about what it would cost to mail water bills.

— Approved seeking bids to replace a 1982 dump truck and plow. The city had budgeted $180,000 for the purchase.

— Also authorized seeking bids for work on the entrance and public bathrooms at the public safety building to make it handicapped-accessible.

— Learned from Edlebeck the Safe Routes to Schools grants won’t be awarded until August instead of June. The delay would probably push back construction to 2020.

— Approved writing a letter of support to the Dickinson County Board on seeking a $25 million U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development loan for Dickinson County Memorial Hospital, emphasizing the city would not provide financial support. Council member Cynthia Miller-Dixon abstained from the vote because she had questions about how the money would be used and paid back.