Town Manager Christopher Ong has presented his proposed budget for fiscal year 2012/2013 to the Town Board of Yadkinville.
The budget has an overall increase of 5.2 percent from last year’s budget for a total of $4,343,161.
“The growth in this year’s budget is due primarily to budgeting for identified immediate capital projects and needs, particularly the town reservoir and dam remediation project,” Ong said. “Secondary causes include: mandates, and increases in fuel, energy, and insurance costs.”
The budget recommends the inclusion of a solid waste fee of $8 monthly per residence and small business.
“Yadkinville provides curbside garbage and recycling, bulky item and leaf pickup, and is currently the only municipality in the county that does not charge solid waste and recycling fees,” Ong said. “The hope is that we can continue providing an exceptional variety of services to the taxpayers without raising the property tax rate and while maintaining the lowest property tax rate in the county.”
The proposed budget recommends a transfer of $26,450 from the general fund balance to balance the 2012/2013 budget. The proposed budget report states that this transfer will be mostly offset by an estimated $25,000 surplus from the 2011/2012 general fund budget that will revert to the general fund balance on July 1.
“The estimated $25,000 surplus is predominately due to one administrative position, which was eliminated approximately halfway through this fiscal year,” Ong said.
The recommended budget also suggests a 10 percent increase in water and sewer rates for the upcoming year.
“The purpose of the proposed utility rate increase is to cover the costs of the town’s water and sewer operations; as well as maintain the critical capital infrastructure and investments necessary to provide clean, safe, and healthy water and sewer services to our customers,” Ong said. “From a financial perspective, we need to operate at a point where our expenses are not exceeding revenues.”
Ong says that Yadkinville residents with average water usage should expect to see a few dollars difference in their water and sewer bill each month.
“A household utility bill based on a monthly consumption of 3,000 gallons including both water and sewer will see an average increase of approximately $2.21,” Ong said. “From an affordability standpoint, this increase manages to maintain costs in the low 10-15 percent range when compared with similar monthly bills from 50 regional utilities.”
Ong says that the biggest challenge when preparing the budget this year was maintaining the quality of services offered by the town while still making necessary cuts.
“The biggest challenge in preparing this budget was identifying the priority projects and needs essential to maintaining the town’s expected level of service delivery and then targeting non-critical items of expenditure within the budget to cut that would have the least direct impact on services provided to the taxpayers,” Ong said.
“Overall, this budget process was a great team effort with the town board providing excellent guidance and our department heads doing an exceptional job of justifying and prioritizing their budget requests while looking to conserve dollars.”
A public hearing has been set for June 25 at 9 a.m. for adoption of the proposed 2012/2013 town budget. The meeting will be held in the town commissioner’s room in Yadkinville Town Hall at 213 South Van Buren St.
Reach Lindsay Craven at 679-2341 or at email@example.com.