Maybe next year Highland will become a million-dollar city.
"Let's hope so," says Mayor Ed Scott.While the city is financially sound and debt free, it has considerable costs on the horizon. Rapid residential growth has taken the sewer and water systems to the limit. Highland's budget has increased along with its population, but it still might not be enough in the future.
The city's general fund budget, made up mostly of sales and property tax revenue, balloons each year - $600,000 . . . $700,000 . . . The proposed 1994-95 budget is estimated at $835,050.
The Highland City Council will hold a public hearing on the budget proposal Wednesday, May 25, at 8 p.m. in the city offices. The city is scheduled to adopt a final budget June 8.
The tentative budget does not include an increase in taxes or fees.
Much of the new revenue will come from an anticipated increase in sales tax, utility fees and proposed impact fees. Highland's first commercial development, Canyon View Village, is expected to put $60,000 to $80,000 into city coffers after it opens this summer. The village is to include a grocery store, shops, a restaurant and professional offices.
Utility fees imposed last year are expected to bring in about $55,000.
"We've tried to be very conservative in our estimate of revenue. Highland has a track record for being under budget," said Scott.
In the coming years, however, the city will likely need every dollar.
Highland must decide whether to help build a pressurized irrigation system, join the Timpanogos Special Service District, expand its sewer system, beef up its police force and contribute to a new library.
"All of those things are going to be heavy costs that may require Highland to do some kind of bonding," Scott said.
Proposed impact fees on new building lots will help pay for sewer and water services and city parks.
The City Council also must decide what to do with an estimated surplus of $40,000 to $100,000 this year. Scott said several areas could use the money, but he isn't sure where it will be allocated.
The council has budgeted $45,000 for a full-time city administrator the past two years. It intends to fill the position this year.
General fund $835,050
General funds: $777,910
Where it comes from:
Property tax $215,000
Last year: $197,110
Sales tax $305,000
Last year: $268,000
Building permits $75,000
Last year: $90,000
Road revenue $65,000
Last year: $62,000
Utility franchise tax $55,000
Last year: $55,000
Where it goes:
Police department $195,000
Last year: $195,000
Last year: $138,750
Streets and roads $90,800
Last year: $93,855
Parks and recreation $50,073
Last year: $56,700
Last year: $48,250