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August 14th, 2009
Menchaca unveils FY 2010 budget

San Marcos City Manager Rick Menchaca unveiled the city’s FY 2010 operating budget proposal this week.

By ANDY SEVILLA
Associate Editor

San Marcos City Manager Rick Menchaca provided the city council with an overview of the Fiscal Year 2010 operating budget Tuesday night, unveiling a $39.7 million spending program.

Menchaca also discussed the Capital Improvements Program (CIP) fund, airport fund, solid waste and collection fund, and the drainage fund.

“The budget is in alignment with the city’s strategic plan,” Menchaca said. “Management, directors, and city staff worked to identify resources and prioritize programs to align the city’s operations and capital projects according to the city council’s five strategic goals in the plan. While it is not realistic to accomplish all goals by the end of the following fiscal year, this budget focuses on meeting the council’s highest priorities.”

City council’s five goals include: expanding economic development, improving the image of San Marcos, enhancing the region’s transportation grid, improving the collaboration between San Marcos and other regional entities, and ensuring environmental protection and smart growth.

The general fund comes to $39.7 million, while the water/wastewater utility fund amounts to $27.1 million, and the electric utility fund has the largest share at $56.3 million. City staff asserts the budget provides for a strategic plan, a sound financial plan, it enables analysis of performance, and maintains infrastructure.

The fiscal year 2010 combined fund revenues are estimated to total $140,978,869, while the total combined fund expenditures comes to $145,474,683. The drainage fund revenues for fiscal year 2010 come out to $1,437,367, while the expenditures amount to $2,196,806. City Staff is recommending the tax rate remain at $0.5302 per $100 valuation.

Economic development is broken down into:

– Implementation of an economic development strategic plan, amounting to $57,000;
– A professor residency incentive, receiving $50,000;
– A Central Texas Medical Center (CTMC) development incentive at $125,000;
– An allocation of $301,513 for Economic Development San Marcos;
– A small business and retention program receiving $53,122;
– Funds for Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) marketing;
– Marketing funds for the outlet malls;
– Staffing for the downtown fire station at $277,000;
– A comprehensive master plan, amounting to $500,000;
– Implementation of a parking management district, costing $375,000;
– A housing strategic plan, and
– Downtown infrastructure improvements in the CIP, totaling $1,968,000.

Improving the image of San Marcos is the umbrella for:

– Branding, totaling $133,000;
– “Hot Shot” bulky waste, coming to $15,000;
– A municipal facility master plan, amounting to $75,000;
– An IH-35 corridor overlay district and redevelopment;
– An IH-35 corridor landscape master plan;
– Code enforcement;
– A full-time juvenile case manager for the municipal court, amounting to $50,000;
– An initiative for corridor and gateway litter control, summing to $22,675;
– Graffiti abatement, at $7,000;
– Main Street, receiving $107,000;
– A comprehensive beautification plan;
– Expanded downtown street sweeping;
– Street sign replacement and pavement markings, totaling $50,000;
– Sign and striping equipment, coming to $90,000;
– Neighborhood street improvements, amounting to $11,200,000, and
– Landscaping with CIP projects.

Enhancing the region’s transportation grid is comprised of:

– A pavement management system, coming to $40,000;
– Traffic signal maintenance, at $150,000;
– Capital Area Rural Transit System (CARTS) bus service, taking $100,000;
– Bike and pedestrian improvements, amounting to $1,750,000;
– Traffic safety and street improvements, at $5,435,000;
– Regional transportation planning, and
– A consolidated bus service with Texas State University.

Improving collaboration between San Marcos and regional entities is addressed by:

– 5-mile Dam Complex, Skate Park Phase II, Purgatory Creek, and Spring Lake Preserve, totaling $5,130,000;
– City/county Partnership on downtown facilities;
– Hays Caldwell Public Utility Agency (HCPUA) funding, coming to $895,000;
– Texas State’s Green Tech Park
– Police Services Achieving Community Together (ACT) campaign;
– Rail district funding, at $74,500;
– Envision Central Texas (ECT), taking $5,000;
– Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO), amounting to $4,000;
– Capital Area Council of Governments, at $2,000;
– Austin-San Antonio Corridor Council;
– Texas Municipal League (TML), Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), Hays County, San Marcos CISD, Texas State, and
– Federal and state relations.

The city is taking on supporting environmental protection and smart growth by:

– Efficiency incentives/rebates, at $109,000;
– Conservation programs, amounting to $61,000;
– Conservation education staff (3), taking $255,324;
– Electric powered vehicle for conservation education staff, at $26,000;
– Participation in Green Cities Conference;
– Single stream recycling;
– City facilities and special events, totaling $37,000;
– Unified call center and notification system, at $90,000;
– Advance wastewater treatment, totaling $3,675,000;
– Household hazardous waste program, at $50,000;
– Smart electric meters, coming to $100,000;
– New, more efficient electric equipment, totaling $410,000;
– New, more efficient water equipment, coming to $102,000;
– Main Street, at $107,000;
– Litter pick-up, street sweeping, river clean-up and maintenance, park cleanup and maintenance, downtown landscaping;
– Maintain utility infrastructure, coming to $26,075,000, and
– Utility System Expansion, totaling $15,926,000.

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