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Roswell city council approves 2015 budget
by James Swift
jswift@neighbornewspapers.com
July 02, 2014 12:11 PM | 812 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
By a 3-2 vote, the Roswell City Council adopted the fiscal 2015 budget June 25. At $112 million, the budget represents nearly an 11 percent increase from last year’s approved budget.

Councilmembers Nancy Diamond, Rich Dippolito and Becky Wynn were in favor of the budget. Councilmembers Betty Price and Kent Igleheart voted no.

Councilman Jerry Orlans was not present at the meeting.

The council voted unanimously for a city ordinance establishing a 5.455 property tax rate. An amended final budget for 2014 also received unanimous approval.

Three last-minute amendments to the budget were made at the meeting. An additional $40,000 was added to a fund for city sponsorship of special events, as well as $43,000 for a part-time special events coordinator position.

The council voted 3-2 to allot $70,000 for a city hall security officer. The motion was favored by Diamond, Dippolito and Wynn. Price and Igleheart were opposed.

Under the new budget, about $63 million is appropriated for general funds. The largest items on the budget are a $10 million solid waste fund, a nearly $8 million capital projects fund and a $7 million group benefits fund.

Among the priciest items listed under 2015’s citywide one-time capital plan are City Green designs at $578,000, radio unit replacements at $500,000 and fire apparatus replacements at $450,000.

The budget allocates nearly $1 million to unfunded one-time capital expenses this year, including $250,000 going towards Roswell Convention and Visitors Bureau restrooms.

At the meeting, Deputy Finance Director Ryan Luckett presented a final amended budget for 2014.

With about $5.26 million in bonds added, expenses for the 2014 budget — which concluded June 30 — topped out at $174 million. The original 2014 budget projected $101 million in expenses.

About $10 million of the 2015 budget is allocated for a proposed five-year capital improvement program.

For 2015, maintenance capital will fund $5.8 million of the program, with one-time capital making up the other $4.2 million. The project, expected to run through the 2019 fiscal year budget, is tabbed at $100 million in total.

In order to meet the program targets, Dippolito said the city’s primary funding needs to be altered. “At this point, we have to do some funding adjustments,” he said.

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