Frisco amends 2021 budget with $2.9 million in additional spending
Frisco officials last week approved a budget amendment that includes about $2.9 million in additional spending, attributing the change primarily to a stronger-than-anticipated finish to 2020 financially.
The Frisco Town Council approved an ordinance to amend the 2021 budget during a regular meeting April 27, and officials plan to funnel the extra funds toward hiring for unfilled positions, capital improvement projects and more. Finance Director Bonnie Moinet presented the recommended expenditures during the meeting, noting that she felt the town would still be left in a strong financial position at the end of the year despite the expanding bottom line.
“Keep in mind with these changes that our fund balances in all of the funds will still be $22 million and that we are meeting all of the reserve requirements we have,” Moinet said, noting the total fund balance in the previous budget was about $24.8 million.
The budget amendment also revises Frisco’s expected revenue for the year, adding in $340,000 in American Rescue Plan relief and a $200,000 bump in rental returns at the marina.
Significant expenditures added to the budget include about $1.6 million in capital projects, which will accommodate improvements to the Walter Byron Park, the purchase of a snowcat for the Frisco Nordic Center, the remodel of the Frisco Police Station, and the relocation and storage of the recently acquired Mansfield Cabin, among others.
The amendment also adds just under $500,000 to general fund expenditures. The higher-cost items include the hiring of new detective and administrative positions, but a proposed study on compensation for town employees also stirred some conversation. Council member Rick Ihnken asked about the benefits of a contracted compensation study as opposed to an in-house analysis. Town Manager Nancy Kerry said a third-party report could be considerably more comprehensive.
“Right now, what we do … is limited to looking at positions and what is the average salary and comparisons,” Kerry said. “… The main benefit is we charge for fees and services, and we charge for our time. We want to make sure we’re charging the appropriate amount. In a class-and-comp study like this, somebody can come in and look at how much time you’re spending on something and that we can transfer over to fees.”
Kerry continued to say that the study could have the added benefit — or drawback — of improving employee retention, as the study would likely identify some town positions as underpaid and would require a pay bump larger than an annual raise.
The Frisco Bay Marina will be getting some additional funds this year, as well, with more than $430,000 in expenditure revisions to add additional seasonal staff, convert other positions into full-time roles and contract for a marina operations assessment.
“I know I personally feel it’s a lot,” Mayor Hunter Mortensen said. “It’s a big additional expenditure, but I think, per our last conversation, a lot of these things are important infrastructure to keep our level of service where it is. It makes me nervous, but having a good, strong fund balance at the end of it gives me a little more relief.”
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