Saugatuck City Council Approves 2015-2016 Fiscal Year Budget After Public Hearing
At Monday’s city council meeting following a public hearing for it, Saugatuck officials approved a $2.3 million budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year, which begins on July 1.
Done through a consensus -building process, officials identified 12 priority projects, totaling $436,500, based on the vision and goals adopted earlier this year.
A project that may extend into the the 2016-2017 budget is the Oval Beach parking lot resurfacing and additional overflow parking spaces to accommodate the high demand of beachgoers. The estimated cost of that work is $275,000.
The city also wants to replace the shingle roof on the Oval Beach concession stand and restrooms with a metal roof, estimated at $32,000; replace outdated sidewalk snow removal equipment with new equipment, estimated at $35,000; allocate another $35,000 towards the Kalamazoo Lake Harbor Long-Term Master Plan; and hire an engineering firm, estimated at $8,000, to design and plan out a new restroom site at Coghlin Park.
Along with the budget approval, the Saugatuck City Council also released a City Vision Statement and Council Goals.
“Saugatuck is an inclusive waterfront community that welcomes all. City residents enjoy a great quality of life living in one of the country’s highest-rated tourist destinations.
Visitors enjoy a unique small-town atmosphere, exceptional parks and access to attractive natural resources.
“Saugatuck is a vibrant, inviting community with an active tourist-based economy, stable property values and its own sense of history as the community moves into future,” reads the city’s 2015-2016 vision statement.
Council members identified four goals for themselves:
* fiscal responsibility;
* maintain and improve public infrastructure and facilities;
* friendly, honest and transparent government;
* and position Saugatuck as a recreational and cultural center that attracts visitors.
The city maintains a balanced budget with an operating millage rate of 12 mills.
“The operating millage rate was reduced from a high of 12.6 mills in 2006 to 12.0 mills in 2009 and has not been increased since 2009,” indicate city officials.
The current fiscal year ends on June 30, with a projected fund balance of $1.5 million and about a $100,000 carryover from the fund balance to the next budget.