The first quarter financial report for the city of Pekin showed what appears to be some ups and downs, but it is just a snapshot of money coming and going at a given time.

The first quarter of fiscal year 2016-2017 ended July 31.

Treasurer Jim Wolf told the Pekin City Council Monday, “I think, it’s a very good report. It shows that the city has some very good numbers.

“When you look at a first quarter report, and sometimes the second quarter, you get somewhat of a distortion in results because you collect certain revenues once a year, and that’s most particularly is the property taxes, which come in usually at the end of July,” said Wolf.

The revenue for the general fund was $6,127,800 and the expenses were $5,413,693 for a $714,063 surplus.

The general fund, excluding the stormwater department, were better than budgeted because of lower expenses for the quarter. The results for the same period in 2015 were similar with a slightly lower surplus of $703,559.

Stormwater still drawing a deficit

Stormwater treatment is mandated by the state. The city spent $153,044 on storm water treatment and projects and only brought in $20 for that fund, which created a $153,024 deficit. The Council has rejected requests by the administration for a revenue source for stormwater budget items. The funding for stormwater treatment now comes from the general fund.

The city budgeted $637,212 in revenue for the stormwater fee for the first quarter and $490,250 for expenses, which would have resulted in a surplus of $146,962.

Wolf said, “Without a source of funding, the stormwater department continues to draw down on general resources.”

Veterans Drive payments coming in

The capital projects fund reflect the disbursement of money to pay for the newly opened Veterans Drive South. The city paid some of the bills and must now wait for the state to repay the money, said Wolf. The figures show a $2,017,703 deficit in the fund. The budgeted deficit was $1,566,313. The deficit last year at the end of the quarter was $2,043,832.

“The ‘totals-all funds’ (column) illustrates the distortions, large loses, related to the city’s construction activity in various funds with the sizeable loses and doesn’t give an accurate picture of operating results for the city,” said Wolf.

City Engineer Mike Guerra said Tuesday that the city received approximately $20 million up front from the state for the construction of Veterans Drive South. That money has now been paid out. The actual construction of the road is complete, but the final payout from the state to the city will come in six months to a year after the road specifications are finalized and all of the paperwork is complete. In the meantime, the city is paying the remainder of the construction bills. Once everything is finished, there will be $4.1 million for the rehabilitation of Court Street, he said.

Bus, sewer, garbage reporting fine

The school bus expenses were “very” high for the quarter because the annual $900,000 payment for buses came out, said Wolf.

The figures show a $267,371 deficit. The city budgeted for a $67,748 surplus for the quarter. Last year, the fund at the end of the first quarter was $356,160.

The garbage fund had a $162,216 surplus. The city had budgeted for a $225,918 deficit. Last year at the same time, the city showed a $169,807 deficit. Wolf said the garbage and sewer funds fees were higher than budgeted because of a switch over from quarterly billing to monthly billing. The last quarterly billing was in February and the first monthly billing went out in May.

Sales tax revenues, said Wolf, have been below budget because of national trends. The city paid its full $550,000 refund to the state, which was the result of an overpayment to the city of Corporate Personal Property Replacement tax. That means the city will be receiving its full payment of CPPRT. Income taxes are also higher, but the Illinois Department of Revenue is projecting lower collections for FY 2017, which Wolf said will further stress the budget. The video gaming tax continues to climb on a monthly basis.

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