LARNED — The Larned City Council conducted a public hearing of the proposed 2019 budget. City Manager Brad Eilts told the Tribune Tuesday that no patrons attended the public meeting, so hearing no objections from the public, council members approved the budget as presented.
The council conducted work sessions on the budget July 16 and 23, and at August’s regular city council meeting, approved publication of the budget in the city’s official newspaper, the Tiller and Toiler.
Budget trending down
The overall budget reflects all the expenditures a city makes, including the transfers between funds, electrical purchases, and other utilities expenses.
For the second year running, the city’s overall proposed budget is decreasing. The 2019 budget of $13,539,337 is down $32,818 from the 2018 budget of $13,572,155, and $67,048 from the 2017 budget of $13,606,385.
General fund slightly down
Larned’s proposed General Fund Budget at $3,595,511 follows suit with the overall budget, ticking down 3.4 percent from the 2018 Approved budget. But, it should be noted that 2019’s proposed expenditures, $3,595, 511, reflect an increase over 2018’s estimated expenditures, $3,495,670, by $99,841 or 2.8 percent. The General Fund only includes expenses for police, fire, streets, EMS, parks and other non-utility functions of the city.
Often, cities spend less than they budget for. These proposed and actual budgets indicate the total budgeting authority, or the total amount the entity is allowed to spend. City council members project what the estimated expenditures for the year will by keeping in mind what projects and expenses are still underway, and based off previous months expenses. Since Larned operates on a calendar fiscal year, the 2018 estimated expenditures figure will likely change before the end of the year.
Mill levy static
The mill levy reflects the amount of assessed valuation that is charged to property owners each year in the form of property taxes. It’s origin is from the Latin word “millesimum,” meaning “thousandth” according to the website Investopedia.com. A mill equals 1/1,000th of a percent, or $1 per every $1,000 of value.
Larned’s mill levy will remain the same in 2019, at 61.299 mills.
City of Larned
2019 Mill levy breakdown
City of Larned 51.298
Jordaan Library 8.000
Industrial Fund 1.500
“The council wanted to keep the mill levy the same, so we’re basically working with less money this year,” Eilts said.
The smaller budget is the result of two years of declines to assessed valuations, totalling 2.3 percent or $444,562.
The assessed valuation for 2019 is $18,595,649, down from 2018’s valuation of $18,928,495 and 2017’s $19,040,211.