Grantsville Mayor Brent Marshall presented his preliminary 2015-16 budget, which includes a 13 percent increase in spending, during the city council’s Wednesday meeting.
The mayor’s more than $4.7 million budget should increase by more than $550,000 when compared to the final budget for 2014-15. Despite the increase in spending, Marshall said he doesn’t expect tax rates to go up, though the state has not released its certified tax rates yet.
“I have some wiggle room in my budget to make adjustments, if need be,” he said.
A large portion of the increased spending is in a transfer to capital projects. In the proposed budget, Marshall has earmarked $324,380 for the line item, compared with $15,000 in the final 2014-15 budget.
The money transferred into capital projects would be in anticipation of the city replacing about 3.5 miles of cast iron water main under Main Street and a new police and courts complex.
Marshall said in February the project to replace the lines could cost between $2-$5 million.
Upgrades for the city’s computer equipment, services and software will increase the city’s costs by $40,600 in the 2015-16 budget.
The budget also calls for a $33,960 increase in the city’s cemetery budget, with $60,000 earmarked for the main cemetery extension and $45,000 for capital projects, including the planting of trees, installation of paths and sprinkler systems.
A line item for the Clark Farm cemetery, which was allocated $35,000, was unfunded in the mayor’s preliminary budget.
The mayor also cited increased dispatch fees as a reason for the budget increase. Dispatch fees are slated to jump up 39 percent or $28,467 in 2015. The increase represents part of a 100 percent increase in dispatch fees over the past three years.
There will be two public hearings on the budget prior to city council’s vote. The public hearings will precede the council meetings on June 3 and June 17, with the final approval of the budget expected during the June 17 meeting.