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Lodi City Council begins mid-year budget review

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Posted: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 10:47 am, Wed Jan 25, 2012.

The Lodi City Council started the process of evaluating the city's budget Tuesday to see if there need to be any mid-year changes.

The council spent its morning study session focused only on the revenue side of the budget. The fiscal year continues through June 30.

Deputy City Manager Jordan Ayers said the city's revenues this fiscal year for the most part have stabilized, but have not grown significantly. The council still has to discuss how the revenues relate to the expenses at a future meeting to get the full financial picture.

The city's General Fund revenue is expected to only be about $72,889 less than the budgeted estimates for the fiscal year. The General Fund is expected to receive $41.18 million in revenue to pay for police, fire and the library.

The council is tentatively scheduled to review the expense side of the budget at its 7 a.m. meeting on Feb. 7. The council will likely adopt any mid-year budget changes at its 7 p.m. Feb. 15 meeting.

Below are some interesting tidbits from the meeting:

  • Sales tax: The city is earning about $104,760 more in sales tax revenue, in part because Chipotle opened and the city did not expect that additional revenue.
  • Cardroom fee: Revenue from the Wine Country Cardroom came in $84,500 more than expected.
  • Community development: The city received an increase of about $100,000 in building permit revenue, mainly from the construction of Home Depot. They also saw a $45,000 increase in fire inspection fees.
  • Lodi Public Library: The staff at the library have applied for an increasing number grants to deal with budget cuts, and they are expected to receive $31,600 more in grants than expected this year.
  • Police: The city expected the annual COPS grant, which goes to police personnel, to be cut this year, but the state legislature ending up funding it, resulting in an extra $100,000 for Lodi.
  • Measure K reimbursement: The city of Lodi has lobbied and received more Measure K funds, the county's half-cent sales tax devoted to transportation, to go toward roadway projects. The city expects to get $365,200 more than budgeted.
  • Parks and Recreation: City staff was surprised to find out that the budgeted amount of revenue for Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services is so far on target with the money coming in. The department expects to receive $5,955,390.

"It does raise a red flag when the year-end budget matches the estimate, because it looks like you didn't sharpen the pencil, but we did sharpen the pencil," Ayers said.

Contact reporter Maggie Creamer at maggiec@lodinews.com. Read her blog at www.lodinews.com/blogs/citybuzz.

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