August 2016 Edition
We are very pleased to report that since the last newsletter, we have achieved success with regard to the effort to modify the state statute that dictates the method of distribution of the county-wide pool sales tax. Not only were identical bills passed in both the House of Representatives and Senate, but Governor Nixon signed HB 1561 on July 1, 2016.
We are extremely grateful to the sponsoring legislators, Senator Dave Schatz, Representative Sue Allen and Representative Mike Leara, as well as our lobbyist, Jeff Brooks. Additionally, I am very appreciative of the tremendous work and technical support provided by our Finance Director, Craig White, and other members of City staff.
Whereas this is a small, but significant step in the right direction, I believe that passage of this legislation is an indication that the legislature has recognized, and the Governor has acknowledged, that this manner of revenue redistribution is inherently flawed and archaic. We maintain that the system is in need of fundamental reform and are anxious to work with other stakeholders to collaborate and develop a revised plan that is more equitable to all entities.
The finances of the City of Chesterfield revolve around three different funds - General Fund (largest), Park Sales Tax Fund and the Capital Improvement Sales Tax Fund. The total budget for the City is approximately $42 million, of which the General Fund accounts for about half of the total.
As you might suspect, the City has a fund reserve policy and maintains a minimum General Fund - fund reserve balance of budgeted expenditures in order to meet unforeseen needs or deal with unexpected issues beyond our control. The City’s fund reserve requirement is approximately $8.5 million for the year ending December 31, 2016 which our fund reserves currently exceed by approximately $2.5 million.
PUBLIC INPUT ON ZONING
I am sure that many of you have noticed that we have recently had many developments coming in for rezoning and approval, some of which have stirred quite a bit of controversy. First of all, I think it is important to make the public aware of the opportunity to not only follow the process and progress of individual developments, but to attend meetings and even speak in favor of or in opposition to any particular development.
Near the beginning of each Council meeting, there is a public comment portion, during which any member of the public may speak on any topic for three minutes. All that is necessary is that a speaker card be filled out before meeting begins and be given to the City Clerk near the front of Council Chambers. Council meetings are generally held on the first and third Monday evenings at 7 p.m.
Progress of individual projects can be followed on the City’s website at chesterfield.mo.us and search for “active projects.” In addition to the Council meetings mentioned above, Planning Commission meetings are generally held on the second and fourth Monday evenings at 7 p.m. Council Committee meetings are also open to the public and posted on the website. Generally, the public is not invited to speak during committee meetings unless asked to provide information. We also have a Planner of the Day program wherein a planner is available by phone or in person to answer questions. They can be reached at 636.537.4733 or firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope this information is helpful.
I hope to see you out and about, and feel free to say hello, as I enjoy talking with our friendly residents.
Mayor Bob Nation