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Shaker Heights Approves 2013 Regular & Capital Budgets

The city expects to break even or better at the end of 2013

After a month of discussion, Shaker Heights City Council approved the 2013 budget and 2013 capital budget at Monday night's meeting, the last of the year.

Finance Director Bob Baker said the neither of the bulky financial binders have changed much since the previous discussion on Dec. 3. The city expects to bring in $41,121,607 in revenues next year. That's nearly $4 million more than 2012.

The jump to $26.1 million includes roughly $5 million more in income tax receipts as a result of voter approval of an income tax hike in August.  

Shaker also anticipates receiving nearly $1.1 million in assorted license and permit fees, compared to $658,658 this year. The city raised several prices in 2012, including the costs of point-of-sale inspections and applications for certificates of occupancy.

Expenditures are budgeted at $33.3 million, up from $32.6 in 2012. One difference in those figures is the inclusion of $316,660 to Total Economic Development as part of the 2013 general fund. That budget item replaces the previous, large transfers that were taken from the budget to contribute to the economic development fund.

This year, the city is transferring $7.98 million from the general fund in order to pay for several funds and debt services, including the self-insurance fund and the police and fire pensions. Between the transfers and the listed expenditures, the city plans on spending $41,100,436.

"We think we're going to break even," Baker said after the meeting.

Council also approved all departmental capital requests for next year. The largest came from the Public Works department — $2 million for street improvement projects. The Police Department requested $310,000, with more than half for police vehicles. The fire department made the smallest request, $60,000 for an updated records management system. Capital funding was determined through 2017 during this year's budgeting process.

As for the current year, Baker said the city got the deficit down to just under $800,000.

"We've done well this year when you consider that we started out with a budget that forecast a deficit of $2.5 million," Baker said.

"The departments are generally underspending in their budgets."

Paul Williams December 24, 2012 at 04:46 PM
This is pretty outrageous. We taxpayers have to pay a 29% increase in our city income tax and the city has an $8 million surplus to give to the public employee unions. We now know who really runs this city.
Derek Abbott December 27, 2012 at 11:10 PM
"Expenditures are budgeted at $33.3 million, up from $32.6 in 2012. One difference in those figures is the inclusion of $316,660 to Total Economic Development as part of the 2013 general fund. That budget item replaces the previous, large transfers that were taken from the budget to contribute to the economic development fund." One question...what's the return on investment on this $316,000? We've lived here for six years and have only seen businesses leaving. These include Panera, PetCo, Jennifer Convertibles, a Touch of Italy, car dealership on warrensville. Nothing has taken the place of these businesses. Let's see the numbers on business activity in Shaker in 2006 relative to 2012, and see if our taxpayer investment is paying off.
Derek Abbott December 27, 2012 at 11:19 PM
Also, the last line is interesting: "The departments are generally underspending in their budgets." Does this mean that Shaker was being disingenuous in their assessment of the "dire financial straits" the city was experiencing when they were trying to pass their tax increase? They overstated the deficit by $1.7 million dollars!! And based it on grossly inflated departmental budgets!!! This is either deceitful or incompetent, possibly both.

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