Honorable Riverton City Councilmembers and Residents:
I am pleased to submit to you the Mayor’s Budget for Fiscal Year 2022-2023 for your review and consideration. In close consultation with our city manager and administrative services director, this proposal accounts for both operational need and the new strategic priorities established by the City Council.
Our city is well-positioned to accomplish much in the coming year largely due to smart planning efforts and fiscally sound policies and practices. Here are a few financial highlights to note as you review the budget:
- There are no proposed fee or property tax increases.
- Total budgeted expenditures, excluding transfers and additions to fund balance, are $53.1 million.
- Since Fiscal Year 2015, total budgeted expenditures for the city have only grown by 37%, and just 29% if you remove one-time expenditures tied to Federal and State emergency funding such as the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.
- Since Fiscal Year 2015, taking out storm water expenditures that were rolled into this fund, expenditures have increased just 17% in the General Fund. Substantially lower than inflation. The General Fund is the best barometer of whether a government is fiscally disciplined in my view.
- Sales tax revenues have increased 59% since 2018. We anticipate finishing at $11 million in sales tax revenue for Fiscal Year 2022.
- American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds will be used to pay for several projects. The city has already received $2.6 million and will receive the remaining $2.6 million in July.
- We anticipate a very healthy flow of development revenue to the city, including 182 single family homes and 220 multifamily units we project to begin construction this year.
- We continue to reduce city debt; current debt per capita sits at $805 down substantially from $1,118 in 2015.
- Riverton City maintains a AAA credit rating.
There are several large projects I wanted to call out that are funded with this budget proposal. It is my belief that these projects align with the city’s strategic priorities and operational needs:
- I have proposed the installation of a reverse osmosis system on the city’s Green Well to improve water quality that will meet or exceed the quality of water provided by the Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District (JVWCD). Salt Lake County has signaled interest in contributing $3 million toward the project in exchange for a special water rate for the Riverbend Golf Course. This investment, combined with a contribution of $650,000 from the city using ARPA funds, will allow us to re-engage the Green Well. This innovative project could supply nearly half of the city’s culinary water needs, reducing our dependency on JVWCD water, and allowing us to keep culinary water rates low for the foreseeable future.
- We have budgeted funds to replace aging water lines on 1830 W and 11800 S.
Pressurized Irrigation (Secondary Water)
- $3 million ($1.5 million this year and $1.5 anticipated next year) of ARPA funds have been budgeted to install secondary (pressurized irrigation) water meters on the remaining two-thirds of connections without a meter. The city anticipates the State of Utah paying for 70% (approximately $8.8 million) of the total cost of this project using funds the Utah State Legislature set aside in House Bill 242 for this purpose. This city has already made application for those state funds. It’s likely this project will span the next two years.
- I am proposing we make significant investments to improve pressurization and filtration of our secondary irrigation water system. $850,000 has been budgeted for the addition of a pump station, pump repairs, and improved filtration.
- We are currently in negotiations to purchase the balance of secondary water shares we will need through build-out. I am proposing paying for those shares over a 5-year period, paying 20% each year starting in Fiscal Year 2022-2023.
Streets & Parks
- We have set aside $1.3 million for road and sidewalk maintenance and improvements, including funds for a road widening on 1830 W that will coincide with a culinary water line replacement.
- We have budgeted funds for a variety of park, trail, and pavilion improvements, including updates at Summerhill Park, Peggy Green Park, West Field Downs Park, Swensen Farms Park, and the Midas Creek Trail.
- Canyonview Park is slated to have new playground equipment installed. This project is special because the new playground will be accessible for children with disabilities.
- We added an additional police officer in January 2022.
- Riverton taxpayers continue to save money since the switch from the Salt Lake Valley Law Enforcement Service Area to the Riverton Law Enforcement Service Area in 2018. Riverton taxpayers saved a combined $1.9 million in 2021 and $6 million in total since 2018.
- $1.2 million of ARPA funds have been budgeted to install a fiber network to connect city facilities. We anticipate the network will dramatically increase internet speeds at city facilities and save the city money on the cost of internet service, and potentially drive more choice and competition by allowing private providers to utilize this network.
- $1.5 million has been budgeted to make improvements to the first floor of the Sandra N. Lloyd Community Center and plaza area. We anticipate requesting funds from the Salt Lake County Tourism, Recreation, Cultural and Convention (TRCC) Board to cover a portion of the project so the city isn’t on the hook for the entire cost.
- We continue to work toward establishing two Community Reinvestment Areas (CRAs) in the Town Center area, one just east of Riverton City Hall and the other just north of Riverton City Park. My goal for these CRAs will be to enhance our Town Center Area by bringing in new office and sit-down restaurant options for residents.
I appreciate the work of our councilmembers in setting the strategic direction and policy for the city. I also appreciate the work of our dedicated city employees in carrying out city business. Together, both elected officials and city employees contribute to a well-run, fiscally responsible city government that is working to meet the needs of our residents.
I encourage all to read through this budget proposal. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have questions or comments.
Mayor Trent Staggs