Anoka’s council gets look at city’s 2012 finances

Anoka is wrapping up the books on 2012.

While the year-end audit won’t be completed until May, Finance Director Lori Yager recently went over some of the highlights of the fourth quarter of last year.

City revenues were up about $800,000, or 1.4 percent, when compared with 2011. The majority of that was the result of the $2 million in state aid the city received for the reconstruction of East Main Street, said Yager.

Major public projects had the city spending significantly more in 2012 than the previous year.

“Expenditures are up about $10.8 million when compared with December of 2011,” said Yager. “That is explicitly East Main Street and Castle Field in 2012.”

The city did not raise property taxes to pay for that increased spending. This year will mark the fourth consecutive budget with either a zero levy increase or even a decrease.

In the nearly $10 million general fund, expenditures were up $670,000. There was a transfer of $500,000 to help pay for the East Main Street reconstruction.

Yager said the city also incurred more expenses because of a 2 percent wage and benefit increase for its employees.

Police services continue to be the largest expenditure in the general fund.

But general fund revenues also increased by $75,000 over 2011. Property taxes of $5.4 million continue to account for about half of the revenues and are the primary funding source.

Tax revenues went up in 2012, but that was primarily because of the Legislature, said Yager.

“They eliminated the… market value homestead credit to cities and they allowed us to keep what we’re actually levying,” she said.

All of the city’s enterprise funds had operating incomes at the end of the year, except for refuse and recycling. The liquor store, golf and refuse funds all showed a net loss once depreciation, debt and transfers out were accounted for.

“Electric had transfers out of almost $2 million to other funds,” said Yager.

The city has used electric fund surpluses to help pay for other projects in the city, namely expanded street resurfacing. Another $2 million of capital purchases for the city’s electric utility was also spent last year.

Yager told the city council that Anoka is also down about $3 million in cash investments because of the East Main Street project. Interest rates continue to tank, with the annual return on investment at just 1.2 percent, she said.

The council will receive a final report on the 2012 audit in June.

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]