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City Council Approves 2018 Budget

City Recognized for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association
The City Council adopted the Fiscal Year 2018 Budget of approximately $90 million at the City Council meeting on November 27, 2017. The 2018 budget has a balanced operating budget with operating revenues exceeding operating expenditures. The budget supports the City’s mission to provide fiscally responsible, high quality services through effective, transparent and collaborative governance. The priorities guiding the City for the year are fiscal stability, public safety, infrastructure investment and community vibrancy. The budget is the principal policy document guiding the City’s activities and financial plans for the upcoming year.

“The City’s budget is its most important policy statement and guides the City’s immediate and long-term plans. The 2018 budget reflects the needs of our community with a focus on our core priorities and meets or exceeds operational and financial obligations,” stated Mayor Nancy Rotering. “This budget allows the City to continue to strategically achieve our goals while being cognizant of potential challenges and opportunities.”

The 2018 budget development process included five public budget workshops and a public hearing. Highlighted in the 2018 budget are infrastructure improvements totaling $17.1 million, including $8.5 million in street and bridge improvements, $4.8 million in water and sewer upgrades, $485,000 in Bike Walk 2030 Plan and sidewalk additions, $2.1 million in fiber optic infrastructure network upgrades, and $1.3 million in other infrastructure upgrades. The budget also includes the addition of one new part-time facilities position and several organizational efficiencies that will maintain high quality service levels. 

The 2018 budget includes a 5% water rate increase to help offset the capital investment in the City’s water infrastructure. The water rate continues to be one of the lowest rates in the Chicagoland area. The adopted 2018 budget also includes an increase in the sanitary sewer rate of $1.25 to $1.30 per 100 cubic feet and an increase in the storm sewer rate of $8.00 to $8.50 per month per IAU (one impervious area unit (IAU) is equal to 2,765 square feet), in order to ensure long-term financial sustainability in the Sewer Fund.

The 2018 Budget also includes parking permit fee and fine adjustments to ensure the financial sustainability of the parking fund, reflecting an analysis of comparable municipal rates. The adjustments are for annual parking permits from $216 to $260, for quarterly parking permits from $60 to $72, for monthly parking permits from $25 to $30, for parking permit violations from $25 to $50 and for no parking zone violations from $25 to $50.

The budget includes a City total tax levy increase of $510,218 fully dedicated to state-required public safety pension funding, which is an impact of approximately $123 per year for a household valuation of $500,000. The 2018 budget contributions to the police and fire pension funds total almost $8.1 million, including $5.53 million actuarially required by State statute and $2.54 million in additional funding. The State mandates that public safety pension funds be 90% funded by year 2040. State-mandated contributions must be made annually. The 2018 budget continues the City’s goal of accelerated contributions to help minimize the economic impact to residents over time.

Additionally, the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) has awarded the City with the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the 33rd consecutive year. The award represents the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.

To receive the award, a local government must meet a set of rigorous criteria in the development of its Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). Producing the CAFR is a legal requirement of the City, but receiving recognition for the CAFR requires that the report serve as an effective policy document, financial plan, operations guide, and communications device. The GFOA is a nonprofit professional association serving approximately 17,500 government finance professionals with offices in Chicago, IL and Washington, D.C.

“Fiscal stability is a core priority of the City which is reflected in the approved 2018 budget and confirmed by GFOA’s recognition of the City’s continued achievements in budgeting and financial reporting,” stated City Manager Ghida Neukirch. “City staff, the Mayor and City Council worked collaboratively on the preparation of the 2018 budget, which resulted in an operational plan that will provide outstanding services while maintaining a stable positive financial outlook. City staff will continue the City’s tradition of excellence in providing public service, budgeting, and financial reporting.”

Budget presentations and the final adopted 2018 budget are available at Questions about the City’s budget may be directed to the Finance Department at 847.432.0800 or email