When Lathrop voters overwhelmingly approved a one-cent sales tax increase to pay for essential city services, all that anybody knew was that the Lathrop-Manteca Fire District would be getting 40 percent of the money generated.
What specifically the rest of that money would be used for, however, was open-ended – just as long as benefitted the city and its residents and the usage remained in the spirit of the measure in which voters approved.
According to the end-of-year report that will be discussed and eventually voted on by the Measure C oversight committee when they meet this week, in the last fiscal year Measure C has paid for 5 police positions – two community impact team deputies, one administrative sergeant, one school resource officer and one detective – as well as the operation, maintenance and staffing of the Lathrop Generations Center.
In terms of capital improvement projects, Measure C allowed for the purchase of a shade structure at Mossdale Park, a rubberized play surface at Crescent Park, a traffic signal at Harlan Road and Stonebridge Lane and much-needed turf repair at River Park South.
It also paid for a drinking fountain at Sangalang Park and park benches along Harlan Road.
Out of the 40 percent that went to Lathrop-Manteca Fire officials, the district paid for six firefighter/engineer positions as well as 1.98 line battalion chiefs – expenditures for personnel that might not have been possible had it not been for the voters who overwhelmingly approved the sales-tax increase in 2012.
And the measure has allowed for the city to create additional reserves that they wouldn’t otherwise have in place.
According to the report, in June of 2017 there were just over $1.8 million in Measure C reserves scattered across a series of fund designations – including a 25 percent reserve fund worth $498,000 and an equipment replacement reserve of $95,000.
At the end of the 2017-18 fiscal year, the fund is expected to have an ending balance of $1.85 million for essential city services, and just over $300,000 for the Lathrop Manteca Fire District for projects or personnel that may be on the horizon for the growing agency.
Through the end of January this year, Lathrop has taken in $1.72 million worth of Measure C revenue – approximately 51 percent of the projected amount, putting their budget estimates right on track through the end of the fiscal year.
The oversight committee will discuss the mid-year forecasts as well as the future outlook on Wednesday, Jan. 31 at 6 p.m. at Lathrop City Hall – located at 390 Towne Centre Drive.