OVILLA — City council members approved the budget for the City of Ovilla's upcoming fiscal year at a Monday night meeting. Though this is a break-even budget, it allows for improvements to be made to public safety, streets and city facilities.
“I am glad they passed it. There is some street work that needs to be done. The chief mentioned an additional police officer that is needed. There are some new equipment and improvements to city hall that are needed,” City Manager John Dean said. “I think that the city’s outlook is good. We are going to continue to see some growth. Not major growth like what is around us in Red Oak, Midlothian or Waxahachie but we are going to see slow, steady growth.”
The proposed budget is a break-even budget with revenues meeting expenses in the general fund. Income and expenses are estimated at $3,555,419, each, and the city has $1,922,965 in reserve, which equals 197 days of operation.
“We have over 60 percent set aside in fund balance. This gives us the ability to operate for more than 60 percent of the year without bringing in any additional revenue. So that is a pretty good number,” Dean said. “I think the outlook looks really good and we are very healthy financially.”
The city council also adopted the tax rate of $0.68399 per $100 valuation.
Dean added that the city is in a good position going into the next fiscal year that begins Oct. 1.
According to the notice of public hearing posted on the City of Ovilla website, the budget will raise more funds from property taxes than last year’s budget by $138,282 and, of that amount, 51.12 percent is tax revenue raised from new property added to the tax roll. The new property is projected to total around $70,686. The total property tax from the 2016-17 fiscal year budget was $2,123,317.
In other business the council:
• Approved to implement a records management policy that is consistent with the local government records act for efficient recordkeeping.
• Approved adopting a resolution for candidate nominations for the Dallas Central Appraisal District Board of Directors for 2018-2019 and nominated Michael Hunt.
• Approved adopting a resolution for candidate nominations for the Ellis Appraisal District Board of Directors for the years 2018-2019 and nominated Phillip Lynch.
• Discussed progress and received updates on activities related to the Heritage Day celebration set for Sept. 23.
• Discussed sewer averaging for utility billing.
• Approved adopting a resolution repealing a resolution and rescinding authorization for the Red Oak Creek 12 inch water line installation project agreement between the city and FM Utilities.
• Approved to increase the annual salary of the city secretary from $59,000 to $65,000 after conducting an annual evaluation of the position.
• Took no action after evaluating Dean’s performance as city manager for the past three months. The three-month evaluation is pursuant to the employee policies manual.
• Gave proclamations for Constitution week, Heritage Day, National Night Out.
• Heard a presentation from the Daughters of the American Revolution who recognized Dean for his military service.
• Accepted a donation from Atmos Energy of a $1,000 for Heritage Day.