With little fanfare and no comment, the Spokane Valley City Council unanimously approved a 2015 budget of $68.6 million last week.
In anticipation of taking Thanksgiving week off, all seven members readily reached consensus on the budget on Nov 17, which includes $16.5 million in capital expenditures next year.
Most of that amount – nearly $11 million – will be covered in grant dollars, said Mark Calhoun, deputy city manager. Work will include $11.5 million in street capital projects, $490,650 spent on parks, $2.6 million in pavement preservation, $1.8 million in stormwater management, and $30,000 in equipment rental and the replacement of a SUV for the city’s community and economic department.
The city is not anticipating any new hires and will keep the current 87.25 full-time employees.
The city is also anticipating spending $1.6 million for one-time items. These will include $25,000 for new offices for unit supervisors at the Sprague Avenue police precinct, $10,000 to upgrade dial-up modems at the city’s three swimming pools, $8,000 to replace the lounge-area carpet at CenterPlace and $145,000 for technology upgrades.
The largest one-time amount -- $949,000 – is the city’s share of Spokane County Sheriff’s Office computer-aided dispatch and records-management system. The city contracts with the sheriff’s office for its police department.
While the total of the 2015 recurring and nonrecurring expenditures exceeds total revenues by $1.5 million, the amount will be covered by the city’s surplus reserves. The projected general fund balance at the end of 2015 is anticipated to be $19.1 million, 50.01 percent of recurring revenues.