http://pleasantonweekly.com/print/story/print/2012/06/22/pleasanton-ending-fiscal-year-in-strong-financial-shape


Pleasanton Weekly

News - June 22, 2012

Pleasanton ending fiscal year in strong financial shape

Year-end review shows revenue up $40,000 in $89.7 million budget

by Jeb Bing

Except for a few financial hiccups, the city of Pleasanton will close its fiscal year budget June 30 again in a strong position with the next 12 months projected to be even better.

In a report to the City Council on Tuesday night, Finance Director Emily Wagner said the city's revenues for FY 2011/12 should total $89,693,904, slightly more than $40,000 better than her projections showed when the current two-year budget was approved a year ago.

Property taxes for the fiscal year are projected at $8,681,990, nearly $700,000 less than expected, but increases over projections in other taxes and fees during the year made up the difference.

"The decreases in property taxes of $659,570 are mainly attributable to decreases in commercial property assessed values," Wagner said.

Sales taxes showed a gain of $320,180 over her projections last June, totaling $19.4 million as the economy showed slight improvements in the retail and auto sales categories. The increase would have been better but for the need to reimburse the city of Livermore $477,132 for sales taxes mistakenly sent to Pleasanton several years ago for sales taxes collected at Vanstar's now-closed computer stores that were located in both cities.

Other increases over initial projections for FY 2011-12 include $485,034 in development services fees due to increased building activity, ending the year at $2,886,689; and in hotel/motel business license taxes of $631,202 due to improvement in those sectors of the economy, ending the year at $3,450,000.

Due to freezes on hiring and employee wages during the year, personnel costs also decreased by $453,112 to a year-end total of $67,832,701. Still, the city moves into FY 2012/13 with personnel costs representing 77.7% of the General Fund budget.

"That's too high and I want to work to reduce the percentage" Councilman Jerry Thorne said Tuesday night.

Callippe Preserve, the city's municipal golf course, continued to see its projected revenue dip during the year as golfers held back on the number of times they played over budgeted expectations. Revenues at the course totaled $4,132,255, down $247,745 from budgeted income for the year. Wagner said the city has $2 million reserved in the General Fund for golf course debt service, which is sufficient to pay two years of debt service costs.

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