City approves 2015 budget

Posted in: News
Jun 12, 2014 - 8:54:38 AM

Fire, police, and electric department upgrades and completion of other projects highlight the City of Marlow’s budget for 2014-2015 which was approved unanimously Tuesday evening during a special meeting.
The $9.2 million budget recognizes revenue and expenses expected by the City of Marlow and Marlow Municipal Authority (MMA) during the fiscal year.
Representing a large portion of the budget, full-time city employees will continue to receive health insurance benefits, including dental, vision, and a nominal amount of life insurance coverage.
“Our employees work diligently for the city and its residents, and rising healthcare costs are becoming more prohibitive to employers,” said Jason McPherson, city administrator. “The council, trustees and management are proud to be able to extend these benefits for those employees.”
Projects begun last fiscal year, with completion expected in the next, are the Garland Smith Public Library and an additional substation transformer.
The substation project began in early 2014 and is expected to be complete by year’s end.
“This is a major enhancement for the City of Marlow – improving the reliability for our residents and the safety for our electrical employees,” McPherson said.
The $1.6 million project is financed by a 15-year loan being repaid through utility revenue.
The Garland Smith Public Library will move into its new home in the renovated National Guard Armory soon. The $1.7 million project was financed through the City’s Capital Improvement Fund, loan funds, and private donations.
“Monies from the Capital Improvement Fund were a one-time revenue source that was mainly funded through oil and gas revenues from the last decade,” McPherson noted. “Those funds are non-recurring funds that are best used towards capital improvements rather than recurring expenses, such as salaries. Those monies were saved from the oil and natural gas boom back in 2008, and have been used to help retire debt service derived to fund all these major projects we’ve experienced.”
McPherson said the renovation is 99 percent complete and the conference room has been booked for June 24.
City equipment will receive upgrades through the new fiscal budget.
The fire department will replace a Jaws of Life® and pager system, while the police department will purchase two cruisers.
The replaced cruisers will be used in other city departments. The Jaws of Life® and cruisers will be purchased through EMS sales tax. The new pagers are a part of the fire department’s regular budget.
The electric department will replace an aging pole-digging truck which will be used in the water department. The truck will be purchased through the MMA administration, and is funded by utility revenue.