After some discussion, the Fulton City Council approved the 2011-2012 budget Monday night.
Mayor Larry Russell said he was happy to have a nice budget package. With the recent decrease in the census, the budget committee had to shave the budget even more. The proposed budget featured a total general fund revenue of $1,149,216, as well as some revenue in other funds. Some of the key expenditure totals were $220,593 in total administrative expenses, $553,264 in total police expenses, $196,390 in total street expenses, $127,901 in total park expenditures and $51,002 in recreation and tourism expenses.
Some changes were proposed for the budget, which was placed for approval on Monday night’s agenda, following a public hearing. No members of the public offered comments during the hearing. Alderman Charles Dykstra, first ward, felt the publishing and advertising line item under recreation and tourism expenditures should be increased. The budgeted revenue from hotel/motel tax is $35,000. Dykstra felt that estimate could be increased to $38,000 in revenue. He would then add that $3,000 to the budgeted $8,700 for publishing and advertising.
City Administrator Randy Balk said they cannot be sure how much will come from the hotel/motel tax. He said the fourth quarter typically sees lower revenue from the tax. Ultimately, he said they cannot see now what will be there in the fourth quarter.
Alderman Ron Roels, fourth ward, was hesitant to change the amount in these two budgeted line items. He agreed that the hotel/motel tax revenue is not a sure thing because it can fluctuate. He said he would rather they be conservative. Roels said if in tracking the revenue the city saw larger returns than budgeted, the council could always amend the budget at a later date.
After more discussion, Alderman Randy Boonstra, fourth ward, said he felt they should approve the budget as originally proposed, knowing it could be amended in the future if needed. The budget was approved with only Dykstra voting no.