The Monticello City Council voted 3 to 1 in favor of moving forward with the Truth in Taxation process at the June 12 council meeting.
With the vote, the council is free to consider increasing the certified tax rate. At the time of the meeting the council did not have the certified tax rate numbers and had concerns regarding how the rate would affect the budget for the upcoming year.
The council approved a balanced budget for fiscal year 2012-13 in the amount of $1,887,131. However, because of the decision to begin the Truth in Taxation process, the council now has until late August to amend and re-approve the budget before submitting it to the state.
The council is aware of an increased valuation of the city, up from $67,845,000 to $69,195,000. Based on the increase, if the city were to collect the same tax rate as the previous year they would generate an additional $10,000 in revenue.
In the budget approved at the meeting, the city would be in a revenue neutral position from the previous year.
Councilman Scott Frost motioned to proceed with truth in taxation process for potential tax increase. Councilman Craig Leavitt seconded the motion. Councilman Tim Young voted in favor with Councilman Brad Randall opposed.
The council also approved amendments to the current budget. There were concerns that revenue at the city pool are down as there have not been many season passes sold this year. The projected pool revenue is $20,000 for the year and is only at $15,000 through the end of May.
Assistant City Manager Greg Westfall told the council he is open to any and all suggestions to get kids to use the pool. Councilman Tim Young suggested using a punch card pass at the pool, similar to the ones used at the golf course. The council liked the idea of moving forward with the punch cards right away.
Several council members expressed the concern that a lot of people don’t feel like they use an annual pass enough to justify the cost. The council also suggested the possibility of lowering the price of a family pass or individual pass next season or offering a discount if passes are purchased before the pool opens.
Councilman Randall suggested a daily rate where a person who swims during one session during a day can return the same day for another session with no additional charge.
City Public Works supervisor Nate Langston reported on the current water situation, telling the council that there is currently 1,600 acre feet of water in Loyds Lake, which is only 44 percent full.
The lake was that low in 2010, but spring runoff brought it up 30 feet, compared to only two feet of spring runoff in the current year.
Intake has been lower than average for the past three months, but secondary water use skyrocketed in May. With a usage of over 24 million gallons, it became the highest usage month since 2005 and is double the 12.4 million gallons historical average for the month.
Langston told the council that his department has been pushing conservation hard in the community and use in June is on pace for average. The council discussed possible funding sources to seek money for secondary water metering for all residents in the future.
The Utah Municipal Clerks Association presented Cindi Holyoak with the certified municipal clerks designation. The council was told that Holyoak had to attend 120 class hours of University level credit work over five and a half years to attain the designation given by the International Institute of Municipal Clerks. It is reported that only 67 of the 341 members of the clerks association have earned the designation.
The council discussed a possible fee to be charged to vendors at the baseball park during the Pioneer Day celebration. Several options were discussed, including no fee and a discount for vendors who sell at the park as well as the ball field.
Councilman Scott Frost felt the food vendors are competing with local restaurants and should be charged a fee. The council agreed, approving a $20 fee for all vendors. Vendors will also not be allowed to compete with the recreation committee concession stand on major items.
There is some concern about vendors who set up booths outside the baseball park in order to avoid paying the fee. The council was told this is against city ordinance, which will be enforced with all vendors paying the fee.