BY JUDY SHERIDAN
The Aledo City Council passed the FY 2013-14 budget Thursday.
The new budget takes effect Oct. 1.
The $5.5 million budget is up 20 percent from last year with no property tax rate increase. The rate of 39.43 cents per $100 valuation has been the same for the last seven years.
The general fund is $1.43 million, the water & sewer budget is $2.64 million,
debt service is $1.71 million and the Economic Development Corporation budget has $282,000 in projected expenditures.
The biggest difference in revenues in the general fund is due to sales tax revenue projections, up $53,000 from last year. Property appraisals are higher, so property tax collection is estimated to be 15 percent higher. Reserves are also being drawn down by $86,000.
The expenditures side of the general fund will support four new full-time positions — including another sheriff’s deputy — an animal control budget increasing from $5,000 to $42,000 due to more complaints about unleashed animals, the purchase of a replacement law enforcement vehicle and employee merit salary increases of up to three percent.
In the water/wastewater fund, the increase in revenues is attributable to the use of reserves; $150,000 from the fund’s reserves — to avoid a rate increase — and $400,000 from impact fee reserves to pay for a 12-inch water line along FM Road 1187 and the basin 3/Clearfork interceptor, a sewer project on the north side of the city.
The city will continue its $50,000 annual donation to the Aledo Volunteer Fire Department — now part of Emergency Services District No. 1 — because the department will not begin receiving tax revenue until October 2014.
Donations to the East Parker County Library will increase by $1,000 this year to $7,000.
Shary Street in the Lasater Addition and Shady Valley in Hidden Valley will receive asphalt overlays this year.
Funds are also budgeted for improvements to Community Center Park, including a pavilion.