It’s Your Turn Now!

Well everybody, we have almost made it to the end of the line with this years budget process.  This coming Tuesday, May 20th, we will be holding a public hearing during City Council.  During the policy session, we will open the public hearing for public comment on what your thoughts are on this budget document.  If you find the document confusing, don’t feel bad.  (Let’s be honest, its a long document with numbers, and there aren’t many of us who find reading those types of documents enjoyable.)  Even if you don’t understand the document, you can still let us know what you want to see your money spent on, and even what you specifically don’t want us to spend your money on.  You can let your voice be heard in person on Tuesday, or you can leave your comments here and I’ll share them with the Council on Tuesday for you.

For those who are not familiar with the City’s budget document, I’ll do my best to briefly describe what you are looking at.  Here is the page to pull up the budget documents for yourself.  Tentative Budget

You will notice that there are five separate documents on the tentative budget web page.  I will give a brief explanation of each.

 

The Capital Projects is a document that shows expenditures that are for major equipment or work that will be a one time expense (unlike recurring operational expenses).  These types of expenses usually carry long term value.  (Like roads or heavy equipment)  To see these proposed expenses, you can look in the last column.  There is a breakdown of capiatl projects for the general fund and for the enterprise funds.

The Debt Service Fund is pretty straight forward. This document will show you what debt payments are proposed to be paid and what they will be paid on. It will also show you what revenues will be coming in to the fund and where it will come from.

The Enterprise Funds are a bit more complicated.  This document shows the expected revenues and expenditures for all functions from our utilities. The first page shows totals for all utilities combined in a summary. The detailed breakdown of the revenues and expenditures can be found on the pages that follow the summary.  Each utility will have a breakdown of expenditures, revenues, fund balance, personnel services (which is all pay and benefits), materials, supplies and services, capital outlay, debt service, and inter-fund transactions. If you need help with any of those we can talk after the meeting.

The General Fund is the largest document as it details every expenditure and revenue for just about every governmental function that falls outside of utilities.  The first page of the document and the notes on “capital needs” at the end of the document will give a good summary overview.  There is quite a bit of detailed information in between for every function and department.

The last document is for the Impact Fee Funds. This document shows the expenditures, revenues and balances for each of our various impact fee funds. Impact fees are charges that Eagle Mountain establishes to pay for the future expense of infrastructure construction.  Every time a home is built, a fee is paid to the city and deposited into each of the impact fee funds. Those funds are already scheduled for future projects which can be found on the Capital Facilities Plan (now called Impact Fee Facilities Plan).

There you have it! A crash course in the Eagle Mountain budget breakdown.  Now, it’s up to you! Now you get to have your say.  Admittedly, you may have to do a little reading if you want to know what we intend to do with your money this year, but you can always skip that step and just leave a comment letting me know what is important to you.  I may not respond to each of your comments, but I will absolutely share your comments with council on Tuesday. So let me know what you think!

While no vote will take place on the budget at this next meeting, the final budget adoption will occur during the last meeting in June. That is just around the corner.

 

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5 thoughts on “It’s Your Turn Now!

  1. I would rather have money spent on changing the landscape on the islands so that we need less water similar to what the islands in city center have rather than spend money on changing out the timers and sprinklers.

    • Ken, the timers the city will be paying for will control an area that does not have high islands. The HOA is purchasing some relatively inexpensive timers to put a “band-aid” fix on the problem where the higher hills exist. You are absolutely correct though. The high berms must be knocked down for a total solution. In reality, the entire system has significant problems. If we were to knock down the berms now, there would be a greater expense from labor, re-landscaping, and replacing the pipes and heads that would be dug up. From leaking pipes under ground, over pressurized lines, undersized pipe, cut irrigation control wires, to spray heads in the turn lane planter that are only 10 inches wide, and sprinkler heads that mist and don’t spray, there are many issues. All of these issues must be addressed, and will be addressed in due time. We are requesting funds to begin the phased solution in an area where the hills are not so high and we believe runoff can be managed far better. The system will be buried with conduit and everything will be added in the GIS system so that we know where it is when someone asks permission to dig. There are other benefits to the new timer system, though the biggest benefit is that it will be part of a permanent solution in that area and not a “band-aid” fix. This way we can continue to make progress even if funds are tight. I appreciate your suggestion and I agree that they need to be knocked down. Hopefully my convoluted explanation sheds some light on why our approach looks as it does.

      • I am talking about not just knocking them down but removing the grass and landscaping that requires lots of water and planting drought tolerant plants and landscaping such as rock and other things that need minimal water. Similar to what is on Pony Express Pkwy near the new middle school and just before Bobby Wren Blvd. It seems that what would be saved in water would eventually offset the cost of changing it out not to mention helping to conserve our precious resources.

  2. Can we please fix the roads in the ranches? And widen them. We are growing, which is awesome, but it’s congested!

    • Jennifer, I have requested 750,000 to fix the roads On Pony Express Parkway, and the western most lanes on Ranches Parkway. We have also requested funding for the widening of Pony Express. That widening project will cost millions however, and it will not happen this year. In looking at where the project falls on the priority list, I fully expect to receive the funding. Lastly, I have requested funds for a roller and an asphalt paver so that we can maintain our roads to a higher standard than what we currently have been. The total expense of those two pieces of equipment is 250k.

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