Dublin Villager

Dublin's general operating revenue expected to decline in '14

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Dublin is anticipating a decline in general operating revenue in 2014.

According to the 2014 budget presented to Dublin City Council members during a Nov. 6 workshop, the city expects to yield $71.7 million in revenue, about $4.2 million less than what will come in this year.

For the 2013 budget, city staff anticipated $69.1 million in revenue, but is now expecting to bring in $75.86 million instead.

"We're conservative in our revenue projections because of our reliance on income tax," Finance Director Angel Mumma told council members.

In 2014, the city anticipates taking in $76.48 million in income tax revenue.

From there, 75 percent, or $57.36 million, will go into the general fund and 25 percent, or $19.12 million will go into the capital improvements fund that pays for infrastructure construction and improvements throughout the city.

Dublin also receives general fund revenue from service charges, permits, fines, licenses and other local taxes, but 80 percent of its revenue comes from income taxes.

"There were cuts made to state revenue, but because we are conservative with our revenue it has not been catastrophic," Mumma said, adding that the city has seen a decline of about $500,000 in state revenue over the past few years.

For expenditures, Dublin is anticipating a 3.9 percent increase between 2013 and 2014.

"That includes taking on emergency dispatching for Hilliard and Norwich Township," Mumma said, adding that without the extra costs from the emergency dispatching, the expenditures would increase about 3.2 percent.

In 2013, the city budgeted for $71.23 million in expenditures, but is now expecting to see about $68.59 million in actual spending.

In 2014, Dublin plans to have $74 million in expenditures.

"We've been pretty consistent in the 3 percent range the last few years," City Manager Marsha Grigsby told council.

In the 2014 expenditures, 41 percent goes to salaries and another 14 percent is allocated to benefits.

Grigsby said, however, health costs have been on the decline for the city in recent years because of programs that encourage good health and preventative care.

A stretching program instituted for employees who do physical work has put the number of injuries on the decline, Grigsby said.

Because employees must stretch before they work, there has been one injury this year, compared to the eight to 12 the city sees in a normal year, she said.

With expenditures in 2014 overtaking revenue by about $2.3 million, the city's year end balance is expected to decrease.

In 2013, Dublin was anticipating a year end balance of $50.6 million, or 87.5 percent of the expenditures.

Dublin has a policy to end the year with a balance of at least 50 percent of its expenditures. Mumma said the carryover has helped the city pay for extra projects and receive high credit ratings each year.

In 2014, the year end balance is expected to fall to $49.7 million, or 80.6 percent of the expenditures.

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