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Thursday, December 18th, 2014
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Preston approves 2015 budget revisions


Mon, Dec 8th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

City administrator Joe Hoffman presented information on the 2015 budget and levy to the public at the December 2 council meeting, allowing for a public comment period as required by state law.

One resident attended, but didn’t comment during the public comment period.

Hoffman noted that the city council at an earlier date had instructed city staff to make recommendations to reduce the proposed budget to limit the levy increase to about 6.9 percent. Reductions were recommended in all areas with the greatest reduction coming from the fund for street maintenance. Staff was recommending to reduce the budget by $52,000 ,with $45,000 coming from street maintenance.

Hoffman noted that without the 2014 improvement project the levy increase would have been 1.7 percent. The tax levy provides 45 percent of the city’s revenue. Bond payments are 16 percent of the city’s expenses. The actual tax rate for the city is basically unchanged.

Reductions in Local Government Aid (LGA) have forced the city to levy for a greater share of needed revenue. In 2004 LGA provided 42 percent of the city’s revenue and in 2015 LGA will provide only 29 percent of the city’s revenue.

Councilman Robert Maust questioned the amount of cash on hand in the library fund. Councilman Charles Sparks and deputy clerk Sheila Marzolf explained that a portion of the fund is there as the result of a large anonymous donation that was made a couple of years ago. The donated money is targeted for specific uses.

A long discussion ensued over the policy of budgeting funds for separate departments and the building of funds in a department to be used for a specific purpose, in preparation for an expected replacement or repair in the future. Maust seemed to favor maintaining more of these funds in the general fund. Hoffman did not see the benefit of moving money all into one fund.

The council approved the revised budget as presented with the reductions recommended by city staff. The reductions to the proposed 2015 budget total $51,913. The revised proposed levy is $758,006, which will reflect a 6.94 percent levy increase for 2015. The council will consider certifying the final budget and levy at their December 15 meeting.

Other business in brief

•A proposal from the Republican Leader was approved for the city’s official newspaper in 2015.

•Dwight Luhmann, Lu .....
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Preston adopts assessment roll for 2014 improvements

Mon, Nov 24th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

The public hearing concerning assessments due to the Twenty-14 Street and Utility Improvements was held on November 17 during the Preston city council meeting. Brett Grabau, Stantec, reviewed the 2014 improvements that involved a substantial por ..... 
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Assessment Hearings in Preston

Mon, Nov 10th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

Two public hearings concerning assessments for St. Paul St. improvements and the North Industrial utility improvements were held on November 3 during the Preston City Council meeting. Only one property owner attended the hearings. St. Paul St. Br ..... 
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Preston maintains favorable rating

Mon, Oct 27th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

At the Preston city council’s October 20 meeting, the sale of a general obligation bond was approved to finance utility extensions and improvements for the Industrial Park. Councilmen David Harrison and Charles Sparks were absent. Mike Bubany, D ..... 
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Preston Sets Alley Assessment Policy

Mon, Oct 13th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

An addition to Preston’s assessment policy was approved at the city council’s October 6 meeting. About three weeks earlier, requests for several possible alley improvements had been discussed. Councilman David Harrison was absent. At that time ..... 
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Preston Sets Preliminary Levy

Mon, Sep 15th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

The Preston City Council at their September 15 meeting unanimously passed a resolution setting the 2015 preliminary levy. The 2015 levy increase may be as much as 6.94 percent. In December when the final levy/budget is approved this increase may be ..... 
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Preston 2015 budget discussed

Mon, Aug 25th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

The Preston City Council at their August 20 meeting discussed options the city has to limit the levy increase in 2015. Councilman David Harrison was absent. City Administrator Joe Hoffman introduced the discussion draft for the 2015 budget which re ..... 
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Preston works through property issues

Fri, Aug 8th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

Numerous items on the August 4 Preston City Council agenda involved property issues. Councilman David Harrison was absent. Lot 1 (2.14 acres) of the Northwest Industrial Park is expected to be purchased by Rockny Moger, Bluff Country Manufacturing ..... 
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Preston wraps up details for North Industrial Park

Fri, Jul 25th, 2014
Posted in Preston Government

The Preston City Council worked through an unusually long agenda at their July 21 meeting. Councilman David Harrison was absent. A public hearing was held related to the proposed utility improvements for the North Industrial Park. Brett Grabau, St ..... 
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