Public Works Department back at full strength
The Wyoming City Council on May 20 was presented with a good report on the 2013 audit. Brad Falteysek, of Abdo, Eick, & Meyers, LLP, summarized important points.
Of note, the city’s balance reserves are 54 percent of the 2014 budget of $4.1 million. The reserve is the cash available to meet obligations until the first draw from Chisago County.
From 2009, the reserve balance percentage has risen from about 43 percent, with a dip to just below 37 percent in 2011. Generally, the reserve should equal about 50 percent of the budget to carry the city through half the year.
Budget variances included $372,205 in over-budget revenue. The city was over budget in expenditures by $50,691. All departments except public safety, capital outlay and debt serves were under budget for 2013.
Retirement of an officer and inclusion of fines and police funds in the general fund helped offset an unbudgeted equipment purchase for a front-end loader and construction of the skateboard park. The general government category was under budget by $192,081. The net effect was an increase in the projected fund balance of $321,514.
The effect of the utilities rate study resulted in increases in water and sewer rates to cover operation, maintenance, depreciation and capital improvements. These changes, along with connection charges and permit fees, have resulted in cash balances increasing. The water fund increased $284,944 during 2013. The sewer fund increased by $45,081.
The audit also included comparisons between Wyoming and an average of cities with populations of 2,500 to 10,000. Comparisons were for 2012 because average data were not available for yet for 2013.
Some of the examples of ratio analyses: debt per capita, Wyoming $594, average $2,626; taxes per capita, Wyoming $453, average $480; current expenditures per capita, Wyoming $376, average $649; and capital expenditures per capita, Wyoming $206, average $298.
Council members accepted the audit unanimously.
From May 27-30, County Road 30 was to be closed from Viking Boulevard to the bridge crossing the Sunrise River while concrete is poured for the new roadway. Detour signs were posted.
The Public Works Department is back to a full complement of employees after the City Council approved the hire of Jason Lumsen to fill the position left by Jerry Headly’s retirement.
Public Works Superintendent Jason Windingstad spoke highly of Lumsen’s demonstrated skills handling equipment, his mechanic skills and his experience with turf management.
Based on qualifications, Windingstad recommended hiring Lumsen for the Maintenance Worker I position with a starting wage of $20.91 an hour. Start date is June 2.
The crack-filling contract was awarded to Allied Blacktop, which submitted the lowest of the three quotes in the amount of $39,881.80. The project is for crack-sealing and seal-coating on 257th Street, Fairview Avenue and Meadow Lane. Windingstad recommended accepting the bid, adding that the city budgeted $45,000 for these projects this year.
The council passed resolutions adopting and approving bylaws and a mission statement for the Park and Recreation Board.