over $368,000. Likewise, property tax revenue came in at over $108,000 over budget. These small gains helped to offset some of the lower revenues received in the Licenses and Permit category ($482,406).
Revenues were also less than anticipated in the Golf Course category ($563,687) and in Land Lease category ($1.6M), but thanks to an expense reduction plan that was implemented early in the year, actual expenses in the General Fund were reduced by $1.8M. These reductions in expenses were quite an accomplishment in that all programs and most service levels in the City were maintained, despite these cuts.
At the end of the year, the City Council exceeded its goal to protect the General Fund reserve balance at $2M. It is estimated that the ending General Fund balance was over $2.6M at the end of the fiscal year, and although this is a slim reserve balance, it is better than what had been anticipated.
In the Utility Fund, the net income of the electric operation was $3.7M, which is up over $1M when compared to the prior year. This increase is attributed to an increase in the electric rate, combined with less than anticipated power purchase costs. The City has been very successful in the past year in procuring wholesale electric on the open market at a rate that is less than what would be charged through the NV Energy contract.
The City is still very vulnerable financially in that its reserves are very low, however, there are indications that the worst is over. Complete financial recovery will take years, but the City has taken the necessary steps to place the City on the road to long-term financial sustainability. We are not done yet. There is still a lot of work ahead and difficult decisions to be made, but with careful planning our City can achieve financial sustainability.
Visit Roger at http://www.bcnv.org/CityCouncil/Tobler.asp.