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Ripon OKs $21.7 million city budget

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POSTED June 18, 2014 1:41 a.m.

There’s no budget blues this year in Ripon.

The Ripon City Council voted 5-0 on the $21.7 million financial plan for the 2014-15 fiscal year. Of that, $16.2 million will go to the operating budget.

City Administrator Kevin Werner, at the previous meeting – a scheduled public hearing – noted that many of the important community services are earmarked for the $9.4 million general fund.

The City held two workshops last month before bringing back the budget to Council.

The first meeting was May 6 in which future costs and revenue trends were highlighted, Werner said. The Capital Improvement Plan – included here were the water meters and the city road improvements – was discussed at the May 20 session.

One of the big positives of this year’s budget was in the area of sales tax.

“Our sales tax has the most volatility over time. Since hitting bottom (in 2010-11) we have been increasing between 25 to 30 percent during the next two years,” Werner said.

He pointed out the projections at a 7 percent increase for the fiscal year 2013-14.

Werner reported the summary of capital projects at under $4.7 million.

“The total cost to the City after grants we have received over the years is $2.6 million,” he said.

Council was especially pleased with Capital Expenditures, in particular, finally having funds for upgrades in certain areas. Included are miscellaneous expenses that differ from the previous year such as liability insurance, vacation payout, holiday pay for police, a sick leave buyout program, and sick leave contingency plan.

The newly adopted budget was a far cry from that of a few years back.

“The City had been through one of the worst recessions in recent history and (departments) took many cuts during that time,” Werner said.

He added: “As we begin to recover, the City revenues such as sales, property, and hotel tax are now moving in a positive direction – (Yet) it’s still a time to remain cautious.”


To contact reporter Vince Rembulat, email or call 209.249.3537.

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