Income tax collections for April were down just over 25% compared to one year ago, according Interim City Manager James Pomerich.
“Similarly, our monthly revenue from all sources for April was down slightly under 25% ($360,000),” he told members of city council at their recent meeting. “We were able to cut through our expenses almost 24% for the month and stay under the revenue that was brought in.
“Through our budget review, we have cut our budget 20% to $14.6 million,” he noted. “We have adjusted our expected revenue down to 13.35 million, which means that we still need to cut the budget over $1.25 million. We will continue to monitor our revenue in light of our circumstances and cut our expenses as responsibly as we can.”
Willard Finance Director Lori Huff said the monthly revenue in April from all sources was $1,103,629. This is lower than the total last year of $1,466,177 for the same month.
“Year-to-date revenue equals $4,505,716,” she pointed out. “Year-to-date on April 30, 2019 was $4,669,121. Revenues through April 30 are down 3.5% from 2019.”
Monthly expenditures for April totaled $997,370. This was a decrease from the $1,158,835 one year ago, according to Huff. Expenses in April were down 23.8% from the previous year.
“Year-to-date expenses equal $4,174,086,” she pointed out. “Year-to-date April 30, 2019 expenses were $4,370,331. Expenses through April 30 are down 4.5% from 2019.”
In April, the city collected $370,569. This is down from the $495,907 the year before, Huff reported, by 25.27%
“Year-to-date income tax collections are $1,238,435,” Huff said. “Year-to-date April 30, 2019 collections were $1,253,664. Income tax collections are down 1.21% from 2019.”
With the pandemic, income tax filing and the payment deadline was moved from April 15 to July 15. Huff said she would have a more accurate comparison for income tax dollars after July 31.
“James (Pomerich) and I are going over the budget,” Huff said. “Estimated revenues have been adjusted to $13,349,178. Our year-to-date revenue is 33.75% of this revised revenue budget, which is on track because we have completed 33.33% of 2020.
“We will continue to monitor and adjust expected revenues,” she added. “Expenses have been cut to $14,607,160. We will continue to cut our expenses and plan to finish the year with a balanced budget.”
The city received $11,933 from the Department of health and Human Services through the CARES Act to help cover expenses incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic. Huff said the city will work with the ambulance billing company to track and report any expenses that can be paid by the CARES Act money.
“The Bureau of Workers Comp issued premium refunds in April,” Huff reported. “We previously received these refunds during the last quarter of the year. Our refund was $93,060. We continue to make our monthly payments to BWC of $4,341 a month.”
Members of Willard City Council adopted an ordinance as an emergency approving settlement of the class action grievance by the collective bargaining members of the Fraternal Order of Police approving monetary payments to certain members.
“The cost of health insurance continues to rise,” Pomerich pointed out. “The city was trying to do what we could to control this cost. The decision was made to change portions of the insurance policy. We increased the coinsurance and maximums for out of pocket costs.”
Pomerich said the current Police Union Contract Article XX, Section 4 states, “The City reserves the exclusive right to change insurance carriers, set benefit levels, and otherwise determine the method and provision of coverage during the term of the Agreement provided the benefits are like or similar to existing benefits.”
A grievance was filed by members of the police union regarding the provision, “The benefits are like or similar to existing benefits.”
“In the end, we were able to have some good discussions and come up with a solution between the police union and city council and avoid the arbitration process,” Pomerich pointed out. “So, no new contract. Instead, we compromised and came up with a modified insurance plan for the police union.