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Roseville closing out last year’s budget better than expected

City staff asked to ‘keep cutting back’
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Roseville will likely close out the 2010-11 fiscal year better than expected, primarily because of concerted efforts made by staff to spend less, city officials say.

The fiscal year ended June 30 but bills trickled in over the next few months and updated sales tax numbers came in through September.

City staff should have a budget report available within the next two weeks, said City Treasurer Russ Branson, during Wednesday’s City Council meeting.

“We will end the year well ahead of our expectations, which is positive, and probably by a few million dollars,” Branson said.

He attributes this to a larger decrease in expenses than anticipated, and a small increase in revenue.

“We’ve asked people to keep cutting back and not spending and they’ve done a very good job of that,” Branson said.

His staff is currently analyzing mid-year numbers for the current 2011-12 year budget, which was approved at $410 million. The general fund comprises about $116.8 million of the overall budget and utilities make up roughly $194.2 million.

Branson said property tax revenue will likely be down at least 4.5 percent — the city projected 1.5 percent — or about $750,000. He said sales tax should be up roughly 8.7 percent from the previous year. Sales tax income is projected to account for 34 percent of general fund revenues for 2012, making it the city’s largest revenue source.

“What we hear, what we see is things remain fairly strong around Roseville,” Branson said.

He said nationally automobile dealerships have had a good year.

Damon Eberhart, business manager for the Roseville Automobile Association, told the Press Tribune that sales as of Sept. 30 are up 10 percent. Last year, dealerships in the local automall generated $5.5 million in sales tax revenue for the city, he said.

 

The Westfield Galleria fire in October 2010 and the subsequent closure of a portion of the mall did not significantly impact sales tax revenue, according to the city.

Councilman John Allard attended the reopening of the mall on Oct. 6, which drew more than 1,500 attendees eager to see the 120,000-square-foot rebuilt portion with more than 50 stores and restaurants.

“The Galleria is tremendously important to the community (and) it provides a huge chunk of money to the City of Roseville, plus just the money they contribute to the community,” Allard said. “So it’s great to have them back fully operating.”

Here’s a look at some other items approved during the Oct. 19 council meeting:

Fire Station No. 9 approval of plans and agreement amendment: Construction bids came in higher than budgeted. Plans were modified to exclude some design amenities, which will not change the functionality of the station. The construction estimate is now $3 million, down from $3.4 million. Advertising for the project should begin in late October and construction should be completed by November 2012.

Purchase of Ford Taurus sedan: The city will buy a 2012 Ford Taurus as a fleet replacement for Police Chief Daniel Hahn. His current car is 9 years old. The cost of the vehicle is $25,247.

Security guard service agreement amendment: Scarlett Protective, Inc. provides security guard services for the Pleasant Grove Wastewater Treatment Plant and Roseville Electric. The city will add Downtown Library to the list of sites patrolled. The guard will patrol areas in and around the library, and report potential safety hazards and suspicious activities. The guard will also monitor public restrooms. The contract value will increase by $21,000. The total contract is now $126,445.

Purchase of exercise bikes: Roseville Sports Center has a cycling program that takes place in the group exercise studio, which is used by aerobic fitness, dance and cycling classes. Current bikes are 11 years old and at the end of their useful life. The city will purchase 17 Schwinn A.C. Performance Series exercise bikes for a total cost of $27,894, which includes computer consoles, tax, freight, installation and equipment trade in credit.

Sena Christian can be reached at senac@goldcountrymedia.com. Follow her on Twitter at SenaC_RsvPT.