By BRIAN SMITH
Weatherford city officials say the city is in good financial shape for the first quarter of fiscal year 2013.
Director of Management and Budget Chad Janicek stated in a staff report through the first three months of the fiscal year, which began in October, the city had received $7.28 million of its expected $25.27 million in general fund revenue.
Approximately $8.56 million had been spent. Both are around 30 percent of the annual budget.
Janicek said in a press release the city typically begins the year in a negative cash flow until property taxes come in at the end of January. As of Dec. 31, about 48 percent of property taxes had already been collected, Janicek said. Most of the other revenues brought in by the city, such as sales tax, licenses and such, are at or above 25 percent so far for the year.
Sales tax collections through November are already up about 4 percent from last year’s numbers. The city projected a 1.5 percent increase in sales tax numbers for the year when budgeting was done last summer.
The city also had several one time expenditures during the first quarter of the fiscal year.
Approximately $1.75 million of the budgeted $4.56 million government services budget has been spent, or 38 percent. Government services includes administration departments, such as human resources, finance and budget and the city manager’s office.
In a staff report, the increased expenditures were said to be due to insurance costs in the finance department that will be allocated to other departments later this year. All other expenditures, including community and infrastructure services are at or about 25 percent which is normal for the first quarter of the year.
The city’s solid waste fund has received 25 percent in estimated revenues but spent 18 percent of expenditures. Sanitation fees continue their slight upward trend over the past few fiscal years. The city is also expecting a surge in new recycling customers, a staff report said, from which revenue should be reflected in future reports.
Through the end of December, the city had received less than one percent of its expected $555,450 in hotel/motel tax revenue but had already spent about 65 percent of the money. Costs accrued generally happen in the first quarter of the year while revenues tend to play catchup throughout the fiscal year.
HOT collections grew in the last fiscal year and are expected to do so this year as well. State Comptroller reports that October receipts, the last month numbers were available, were up 18 percent from 2011 numbers.