Rate increases, road projects set in FY17 budget

Sept. 6 public hearing: Grangeville City Council

— The City of Grangeville is proposing a nearly 15 percent increase in its fiscal year 2017 budget. Set at $5,496,785, the proposed budget – effective Oct. 1 at the start of the fiscal year – would include additional funds for planned city street work, as well as rate increases for services.

A public hearing on the proposal is set for Sept. 6, 7:30 p.m., during the regular Grangeville City Council meeting. Comment on the proposal will be taken, after which the budget will be considered for adoption.

The city street fund is proposed to take an 80 percent increase, jumping $427,850 from the current fiscal year’s $533,270 total. According the city clerk Tonya Kennedy, up to $500,000 in street chip sealing projects are planned for 2017, double the amount of the city’s highest chip sealing work. This follows every-other-year planning instituted by public works director Jeff McFrederick to conduct larger projects that cost less to bid and ideally provide for more sealing to be completed.

In proposed revenues, the city plans to take its allowed 3 percent maximum levy increase. Additional revenues will be generated with increases across the board in patron charges at both Snowhaven Ski Area and the city pool, which will be effective, respectively, in the upcoming FY16-17 season and summer 2017. Garbage fees will be unchanged; however, the cost for water and sewer services will increase. So for example, the current minimum of $92.91 would increase to $94.56, effective with patrons’ November billing.

No across-the-board city employee wage increases were set. Rather, according to Kennedy, city department heads have set individual salary schedules or increases based on performance for their respective employees.

Among the other budget changes include increases of 16.9 percent (up $33,500) in the medical insurance fund, 15.4 percent (up $13,894) in the library fund, and 18.6 percent (up $167,520) in the general fund. The city will continue contracting with Walco, Inc., for solid waste services; the sanitation fund is set 4.6 percent lower ($47,550) in the proposed budget.

The proposed city budget is available to view, and copies are available, at city hall. For information, 983-2851.

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