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It is important to note that not all of this development is occurring within the city limits and a fair portion of the increased revenue from permits that we are currently experiencing is for areas in our Extraterritorial Jurisdiction ETJ — the area around the City limits that would be eligible for annexation. Unless these areas of new development are eventually annexed into the city limits, the only ongoing revenue that will be received from this development will be in the form of sales taxes when the people who live in these areas shop in Forney.
However, all of this development will impact future spending. Development like we are currently experiencing is neither guaranteed nor a long term situation and it should be approached with caution. Revenue from permits and inspections cannot be relied on to fund regular recurring expenses such as new employees or new programs.
Hiring new employees or developing new citizen services based on increased collections from these revenue sources could potentially lead to the need to lay off employees or discontinue programs as the revenue spike begins to recede and no new revenue sources are identified to fund the items added during the revenue spike. While it is currently new and not in need of major repair or maintenance, it will eventually require that the city expend funds for maintenance and repair, and additional staff to perform the maintenance.
In order to ease the potential growing pains, future strategic plans and budgets will need to include more detailed and well prepared infrastructure inventories and maintenance plans.
During September of , the City Council voted to terminate that contract. The City is once again in the process of seeking new City Management.
An Interim City Manager has been contracted, and the search for a new full time City Manager will soon be underway. The General Administration department, and the Community Development Administration department were originally created to account for the expenses related to multi-department facilities and service and supply expenses shared by the departments located in those facilities.
Expenses related to building maintenance and repair were moved to a new Facilities Maintenance department with the intention of eventually developing a facilities maintenance program and moving all facilities expenses to that department. All non-building related expenses were reallocated into individual departments, regardless of if the expenses were shared between multiple departments.
Further details on how the expenses were divided is included in the department detail sections of this document. The other significant change to how items are accounted for was in the Information Technology IT department.
This is reflected in the Fiscal Year budget, and a number of major expenses can be seen to move from individual departments into the Information Technology department. The budget process itself was also altered by new leadership. Heavy emphasis was put on City Council involvement prior to preparation of the proposed budget and six budget workshop dates were added, along with increasing public hearings from one to two.
Director meetings with Finance and City Management shifted focus from the financial impact of running the department and meeting the department goals to just the department goals and employee development, no adjustments were made and department budgets were presented in the proposed document exactly as submitted by the Directors.
This is not to say that no reductions or adjustments were made. Several departments thoroughly reviewed not only their budgets, but a number of major services and processes and adjusted their budgets to reflect changes they planned to make either at year end or in the upcoming fiscal year.
For example, with new leadership in the Public Works division, the Executive Assistant and the Public Work Supervisor were assigned to complete the budgets for each of the four departments. They felt that uniform spending was quite high and that the uniform service they were using was not effective enough to warrant the high cost. New leadership in the Police department also resulted in expense budget reductions. The new Police Chief worked with Finance and his Administrative Assistant to review prior year spending and identify areas where spending had historically been lower than budgeted and scaled budgets in those areas back to be more in line with actual spending.
However, these and the voluntary reductions made in other departments were not significant enough to allow for addition of all the new employees and programs that were requested and to present a balanced budget. As the process moved forward and more changes and additions were made, the City Manager instructed Finance to reduce salary and benefits projections for new positions based on likely hire dates.
This is a practice that the City stopped sometime around While there are pros and cons to both approaches, reducing the amount budgeted for the first year of a position based on possible hire dates frequently diminishes the ability to perceive the full long term impact of the additional positions.
This is especially true in budgets like the one presented here, where there are eleven new positions being added. September 19, 12 Operating Budget Prior to the budget, these adjustments were made in the year end revision process and based on actual position hire dates and salary rates. This allows for Finance to make a more accurate adjustment, while also recognizing the full impact of the new position on the next year.
Any surplus funds were used at that time to cover possible overages in other areas, to make one time purchases at year end, or rolled into fund balance in order to fund future capital projects or purchases. Employee Compensation was a major focal point in discussion regarding the Fiscal Year budget. The Police department approached the City Council and presented their issues with employee recruitment and retention and tied these issues directly to competitive pay and benefits packages.
The City Council agreed and the compensation study was begun in late August of It is expected to be completed early in Fiscal Year New Employees During April of , the City Manager requested that the City Council amend the budget to add new employees in both major funds and to move one budgeted position from the Utility Fund to the General Fund.
A Permit Technician and a Building Inspector were added to the General Fund to help handle the increase in processing of permits and inspections in the Building Inspections department. The last time the City added this many positions in a single year was Fiscal Year Not all of the information included in the budget document is for a full year and may vary in other areas of the document from what is shown here.
These increases do not reflect any possible increases that may occur with the results of the compensation study, only those officially adopted by the City Council within the previous twelve month period. There is no doubt that the City has some significant staffing needs that must be met, and with our current development boom and increasing revenue projections, it is simple to get caught up in the idea that we will be able to fund and support a major increase in the number of full time equivalents indefinitely.
The purpose of the renegotiation was to come to an agreement on when the property could be annexed and added to the tax roll. The City Council indicated that this amount was to be used to benefit our public safety departments. Per the new agreement, the annual payment schedule was renegotiated with the intent of the City beginning the annexation process during In the simplest terms, the new agreement includes two payments to be made during Fiscal Year , as reflected in the revised revenue estimates, and at the end of the contract there will be a period of two fiscal years where the City collects only half of the amount that would otherwise be required if the property had been fully annexed into the City.
Currently, these funds are being held to assist in the event of a revenue shortfall in Fiscal Year and resulting from the split Luminant tax payment. While these funds were not officially designated as committed or reserved, the source has been designated within the accounting system, and Council will be notified if they are approving spending from this source.
Both the original agreement and the current agreement from , established set payments for each year. There are so many variables that impact this situation that it is nearly impossible to determine what the actual effect of this change will be, but we can look at what this would have looked like over the past five years. Fiscal Year 2,, Fiscal Year 2,,
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