The Tehachapi City Council approved a balanced $21.4 million budget for fiscal year 2020-21 at the May 18 meeting.
According to a news release received May 19, the approved budget also addressed subsequent balanced years through 2024-25. The budget includes all operating funds within the city including the general fund, enterprise funds such as water, sewer, airport, transit and refuse and capital project funds.
City Manager Greg Garrett and the city’s finance department have been working on the budget presentation and the accounting for the coming fiscal year while the coronavirus crisis forced changes in the day-to-day operations of the city and expected revenues. The presentation was part of the telephonic council meeting that is currently allowed by the state.
“It’s so wonderful to be the mayor of a city that every year presents a balanced budget. In this time of turmoil in the state with everything going on, the state has a terrible deficit, we are in the black and it looks like it will remain that way for the next five-year projection,” wrote Mayor Susan Wiggins.
Additionally, the city’s general fund has $5.8 million reserves, in addition to $1.2 million set aside for the declared emergency situation to be used for unforeseen needs and capital projects in the coming years, according to the news release.
The council voted on a citywide hiring freeze due to the COVID-19 crisis. The police department will fill one of its two officer vacancies in the upcoming year.
With the enterprise funds of Water and Sewer providing a valuable service to customers, those departments also have healthy reserves to allow for emergency repairs and future expansions.
The city’s entire budget presentation is available for review at LiveUpTehachapi.com.