Mesa's spending limit for next year's budget has been set. The Mesa City Council unanimously adopted a $1.13 billion budget Monday night for fiscal year 2009-10, which begins July 1, through to June 30, 2010.
Next year's budget is $56 million less than this year's budget that was adopted last June, but greater than this year's revised budget of $937 million.
That's owed in large part to nearly $50 million in anticipated federal stimulus funds various city departments have identified as what they're eligible and likely to receive. If not for those dollars, Mesa budget director Chuck Odom said the city would have been down $105 million compared to this year.
The city underwent a major reorganization and cuts in December because of the sluggish economy. At the time, 343 full-time positions and $62 million had to be chopped across departments including public safety, parks and recreation and planning. Employees began to be cross-trained, some work outsourced and many resident service programs were cut.
The council Monday also approved a slew of fee increases that include an extra $1 Mesa utility users would have to shell out to help pay for the Federal Environmental Compliance Fee, which now goes up from $2 for every utility account a month to $3. These fee changes are part of an annual revision the city conducts to keep in line with the cost of providing services, according to Deputy City Manager Bryan Raines.
Also at the meeting, the City Council gave the go-ahead to expand the Mesa Cemetery by more than three acres. The city plans to purchase two land parcels on the north side of the cemetery and west of Center Street at a cost of $670,000.