Landrum approves 2012-2013 budget

Published 6:08 pm Monday, September 17, 2012

The City of Landrum has a new budget that includes no tax increases and a raise for full-time employees.
Landrum City Council met Tuesday, Sept. 11 and held a public hearing prior to approving the budget for fiscal year 2012-13, which begins Oct. 1.
The budget includes an increase in tax revenues from the current budget of $502,910 to an estimated $550,000 next year. As of May, Landrum had received $533,337 in tax revenue for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.
The increase for employees will be the first increase since 2011. The increase will cost the city approximately $23,000.
Hospitality tax funds are also expected to increase next year for Landrum. This year’s budget included an estimated $145,000 in hospitality tax revenue and the city expects to receive $150,000 next year. Landrum plans to spend $40,000 of hospitality taxes next year for items including publicity and beautification and another $46,054 in hospitality tax revenue for the depot general obligation bond.
During the public hearing Bob Walker was the only speaker, and he asked that Landrum post its current and new budget on the city’s website. Walker also asked what the city currently has in savings.
City administrator Steve Wolochowicz said the city has two savings accounts, one that contains revenue from the selling of the city’s water system that has not been spent. He said the total in the city’s savings accounts, excluding the hospitality tax, was well over $1 million the last time he checked.
Walker suggested Landrum, with $1 million in reserves, should give tax breaks to residents.
“You should make sure the taxpayer experiences some [benefits] from what’s going on,” Walker said.
He also suggested the city absorb some costs, such as garbage fees, as some other areas do.
Landrum’s new budget is 1.5 percent higher than the current year budget, with $1,576,539 anticipated in total revenues. Of the total, $120,000 is estimated in revenues for the fire department. The total fire department budget is $205,701, including $85,701 transferred from the city’s general fund for salaries and operations.
Landrum’s millage rate will remain at 73.9.

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