Council hears about budget trends of past 10 years

TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

Plainville town manager presented information to the council regarding the budget, and reviewed budget information for the past 10 years as well as projects for the upcoming 10 years. At the Jan. 7 council meeting, Town Manager Robert Lee explained that his presentation was based off of the mill rates from the 2008 grand list and the 2017 grand lists, as those were numbers used to build the fiscal year 2010 and fiscal year 2019 budgets, respectively. Fiscal years run from July 1 to June 31 of the following year, so FY19 would refer to the year beginning July 1, 2018, and ending on June 31, 2019.

The mill rate is currently 33.84. The mill rate used for FY10 was 26.24.

“Over a ten year period that’s an increase of 7.6 mills, or basically 29 percent increase over 10 years,” said Lee. “However this change is somewhat misleading because during that time frame, you know, there have been two re-evaluations and the amount of taxes that one pays is a function of the mill rate times the value of property.”

In FY 2009, the budget was $52,694,589. The current budget is $60,056,058. Lee explained is a difference of $7.36 million, or a 14 percent increase over 10 years, which is an average of 1.4 percent increase each year for ten years.

There are four major categories to the budget — the town, Board of Education, debt service, and capital improvement projects.

In FY09, town expenditures were $14.5 million, and currently are $17.5 million. Lee said this is a “percentage increase of 20.75 percent over 10 years, or a little bit over 2 percent a year for 10 years average.”

BOE expenditures 10 years ago was $32.3 million, and in the current year it’s $37.3 million. This is a difference of “a little bit over $5 million, which is 15.65 percent over 10 years or an average of about 1.57 percent per year,” said Lee.

There was a $400,000 decrease in debt services from FY09 ($4.8 million) to FY19 ($4.4 million). Lee explained that that was “negative 8.4 percent over 10 years, or less than one percent decrease average per year.”

“I would point out that FY19, which is the current fiscal year, debt service was decreased by $312,000, so most of that decrease occurred with the current year’s budget,” said Lee.

In FY09, capital improvement expenditures were $1.1 million, with a $300,000 decrease over the last 10 years, making FY19 capital improvements amount $800,000. Lee said that was a negative 2.7 percent change per year, or, a 27 percent decrease over 10 years.

“I would like to note that the current amount – $800,000 — is not addressing the needs of the capital improvement budget, and we’ll be talking more about that as we get into FY20’s proposed budget,” said Lee.

The Town of Plainville staff and members of the BOE met jointly on Tuesday, Jan. 15, to discuss their proposals for the FY20 budget.

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Taylor Murchison-Gallagher, email her at TMurchison@BristolObserver.com.