Surplus funds delayed projects

Published 10:32 pm Thursday, December 21, 2017

City Council on Wednesday decided to allocate $600,000 in excess funds from last year’s budget to fund a number of one-time expenditures.

The excess funds occurred because of higher than anticipated collections in areas such as real estate tax, sales and use tax and meal tax.

The approved excess funds will go to 10 expenses that were deferred during the budget process earlier this year.

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The largest part of the funds will go to the Economic Development Investment Program. This program is a local incentive that supplies grants to new or expanding businesses.

The Suffolk Police Department will receive $118,000 for two expenses. More than half of the money will go to equipment, supplies and furniture replacement. A total of $50,000 will be allocated to a staffing and resource study.

Other notable expenditures include $53,000 going to the Planning Department for unified development code and ordinance updates and $50,000 going to the Department of Fire and Rescue for furniture replacement.

The rest of the money was split between the Clerk of the Circuit Court, Animal Shelter, Sheriff’s Department, Media and Community Relations and Parks and Recreation.

“The remainder of the $1.9 million goes to the fund balance, which strengthens our financial position,” said Tealen Hansen, city finance director. “We have council-approved fund balance policies, and it helps us to maintain compliance with the fund.”

The city currently has no intention of reallocating the remainder of the $1.9 million surplus to any other projects, according to Hansen.

The ordinance was approved unanimously by City Council as part of the consent agenda during Wednesday’s meeting.