City of Smyrna posts $2.7 million budget surplus for 2017

Smyrna City Hall (photo by Larry Felton Johnson, Licensed under Creative Commons 4.0)

In another sign of the economic growth experienced in Smyrna in recent years, it was announced at Monday night’s council meeting that the city finished fiscal 2017 with a budget surplus of just over $2.7 million.

Smyrna, like most cities, has to set a budget for the coming year based on estimates, since it’s unknown beforehand exactly how much money will come in through property taxes and other revenue sources.

For example, the city set its $92 million 2018 budget last summer and trimmed the number of new positions hired in the process from 20 to six in an effort to be financially cautious.

With the $2.7 million extra for fiscal 2017 now secured, the council voted unanimously to spend $1.6 million of that amount on three additional projects.

“Fiscal year 2017 ended with stronger revenues and lower expenditures than anticipated,” said City Administrator Tammi Saddler Jones. “As a result, the city has a positive year-end position. Finance recommends allocating this surplus to cover several projects that have come up that were not budgeted.”

The largest of those projects, at $1.2 million, will replace the roof on the Smyrna community center, which opened in 1991 as part of the first phase of the city’s redeveloped downtown.

“It is rare to have a surplus in government these days,” said city councilman Ron Fennel. “I move approval of the use of the fiscal year 2017 surplus as described.”

The other two projects are the replacement of HVAC units at city hall and the city jail at a cost of $329,500, and a dump truck repair at a cost of $41,019.

City council members Susan Wilkinson and Andrea Blustein were absent, and the Ward 6 post is vacant, meaning only four council members and Mayor Max Bacon were present. The next council meeting will be held Monday, April 2, 7 p.m. at city hall.

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Haisten Willis
Haisten Willis is a freelance writer who lives in Smyrna with his wife, daughter and dog. He holds a master's degree in journalism from California State University, Fresno, serves on the board of SPJ Georgia and even rides a bike when time allows.

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