Green Park to use $580,000 from reserves to balance ’09 budget

City’s 2010 budget projecting a surplus in both major funds

By EVAN YOUNG

More than $580,000 in reserves will be needed to balance Green Park’s general fund in 2009, according to an adjusted budget schedule.

The city will spend an estimated $581,734 more from its general fund than it will collect this year, according to the document. The fund is projected to close 2009 with estimated revenues of $1,140,374 and expenditures of $1,722,108.

Officials initially budgeted $1,080,050 in revenues and $1,073,014 in expenses for 2009, adding $7,036 to the general fund balance.

The city initially projected a year-end general fund balance of $3,324,750. That amount now is estimated to be $2,880,440.

The capital-improvements fund will end 2009 with an estimated $358,930 in revenue and $329,074 in expenditures, leaving a surplus of $29,856. Therefore, the capital-improvements fund balance will increase from the budgeted projection of $345,373 to an estimated $351,897 this year.

Across both major funds in 2009, Green Park will see total estimated revenues of $1,499,304 and expenditures of $2,051,182.

The city incurred two expenses this year — both related to the redevelopment of Green Park Road — for which officials did not initially budget.

Green Park spent $681,522 to purchase three properties along the road and to help relocate their former owners. The city also paid a total of $200 to the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District for utilities at all three properties once it bought them.

Earlier this year, the city agreed to pay Daniel Lanham $298,000 for his land and home at 9907 Green Park Road. This property was appraised at $118,500 for 2009, according to county records.

The city also paid Robert and Joan Cooper $165,000 for their property at 9925 Green Park Road. Additionally, Meagan Kaiser received $200,000 for her land and home at 9915 Green Park Road. County records listed the appraisal for the Coopers’ property at $138,300 and Kaiser’s property at $118,800.

Lanham’s land was needed for right of way and to swap St. Louis County for an equal amount of ground in Clydesdale Park that will be used to widen Green Park Road, while the other two properties were needed for a right-turn lane at Tesson Ferry Road and Green Park Road to ease traffic through the intersection.

The city’s Board of Aldermen unanimously approved the land-exchange agreement with the county on Dec. 21. The County Council was scheduled to consider final approval of that agreement Tuesday — after the Call went to press.

Aldermen also voted unanimously last week to approve Green Park’s 2010 budget, which projects a surplus totaling more than $100,000 across both major funds.

The general fund is budgeted to collect $1,028,150 and spend $976,419 next year, leaving a surplus of $51,731.

The capital-improvements fund is projected to bring in $350,000 and spend $300,000, a surplus of $50,000.

The city’s general fund balance is budgeted to grow from $2,880,440 to $2,932,171 in 2010. The capital-improvements fund balance is projected to climb from $351,897 to $401,897 next year.

In other business last week, the board voted unanimously to:

• Approve a second amendment to the final development plan for the new, 11,070-square-foot Golden Corral restaurant being constructed at 6110 S. Lindbergh Blvd.

The amendment calls for installing a rain garden on the east side of the property to absorb stormwater runoff, replacing the existing underground stormwater filtration structures.

• Approve a consulting agreement with Mark Payken of Payken Consulting to continue professional engineering services related to the Green Park Road project.

The city will pay Payken $95 an hour to compile an environmental impact study, which is required for the city to use federal grant money to help fund the project, City Attorney Paul Rost said.

Aldermen first voted to hire Payken in June 2008 to perform right-of-way acquisition. Payken’s fees initially were capped at $15,000, but subsequently were increased after he provided additional services to the city.

Besides the acquisition, Payken handled project management and assumed the re-sponsibilities a director of public works or city engineer would normally handle.

The board subsequently voted to increase Payken’s fee cap to $81,000.

After the acquisition was complete, the board opted to pay Payken to continue project management.

In the spring, the Board of Aldermen approved an additional $4,750 to compensate Payken’s management services.

As of July 20, Green Park had paid Payken Consulting $97,697.

The cost of Payken’s services under the most recent agreement “should be less than $5,000” but the $95 an hour rate “may be adjusted upward in an amount not to exceed 4 (percent)” annually.