Why Compare with 2005 Budget?

Since 2005 the City Budget has dramatically increased anticipating rapid population growth. But there has been only 8% population growth with few new building permits. This means existing homeowners are shouldering more and more burden in property tax (assessments have increased substantially) and fees, as can be seen here.

Data Source Iowa Department of Management February 2015

About Expenditures

Data Source: FY2015 City Budget as filed with the State of Iowa Department of Management.

To emphasize, it is not that we oppose taxes. Taxes are essential to community well being. But we need to be careful where the money is spent. Two comments related to the above numbers:

  1. Why the skyrocketing Government Activities expenses?
  2. Have payroll & benefit increases exceeded what is happening in private sector?
Is administrative productivity increasing? Is there overlap in payroll when outside vendors are being paid to do administrative work? Is it possible to create a more efficient model given the advances in technology since the formation of city government process? These questions would be asked by any board of directors in private business. While we elect council members and a mayor, they are part time and have very limited time and resources. As taxpayers we must have the means to address budget priorities and ask tough questions when necessary. That is the sole purpose of MyTown.Center.
Mount Vernon, Iowa

Actual FY
Budget FY
Expenditures & Other Financing Uses

Public Safety 518,300 946,601   Up 83% since 2005
Public Works 363,862 502,873
Health and Social Services 0 0 Click to see comment
Culture and Recreation 310,357 489,283
Community and Economic Development 21,715 138,900
General Government 265,671 566,069   Up 113% since 2005
Debt Service 518,900 1,129,281   Up 118% since 2005
Capital Projects 316,288 2,475,797
Total Government Activities Expenditures 2,315,093 6,248,804   Up 170% since 2005
Business Type / Enterprises 1,092,992 1,635,716
Total ALL Expenditures 3,408,085 7,884,520   Up 131% since 2005
Transfers Out - WHAT IS THIS? 1,843,773 1,775,518 See Comment
Total ALL Expenditures/Transfers Out 5,251,858 9,660,038
Surplus/Deficit 310,853 -218,749   Deficit Spending
Beginning Fund Balance July 1 3,020,210 3,217,289
Ending Fund Balance 3,331,063 2,998,540   down 10% since 2005