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Evanston aldermen to vote on spending increases

Evanston aldermen tonight will be told the city is in "stable" financial condition and they'll be asked to make some additions to the city's spending plan for the year.

The city's chief financial officer, Assistant City Manager Marty Lyons, will report that as of the end of March revenues remained "relatively consistent with budget targets" and expenditures were "being held below budgeted levels."

In terms of cash on hand, the city is 60 percent better off than at the same point last year — with a cash balance of $13.6 million at the end of March this year, compared to $8.5 million at the same point in 2011.

So Lyons and City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz are proposing that the city draw down its general fund reserves by $1.75 million by transfering $1.25 million to the capital improvement fund and $500,000 to the equipment replacement fund.

They also propose spending $1.5 million from the fund balance of the Howard-Hartrey tax increment finance find for streetscape improvements around the shopping center site and distributing $1.3 million from the TIF balance to local taxing districts as that TIF nears the end of its scheduled life.

The streetcape improvements would include sidewalks and pedestrian lighting along Hartrey Avenue and the access drive parallel to it and two new bus shelters and pedestrian bumpouts along Howard Street.

They also call for increasing spending from the Howard-Ridge TIF fund from $430,000 to $900,000 for improvements to city-owned buildings in the district.

The money transferred from the general fund to the capital improvement fund will be spent on a variety of street paving projects and street light power center upgrades. Other new CIP spending would repair the roof of the Noyes Cultural Arts Center and add new streetlights along the AMLI apartment development now under construction at Chicago Avenue and Kedzie Street.

Spending from the equipment replacement fund would increase by $1.1 million for additional vehicle purchases. In addition to the $500,000 transfered from general fund reserves, the other $600,000 would be spent from the equipment replacement fund's existing reserves.

Lyons says no new revenue is proposed or needed to fund the spending changes.

Related documents

First quarter financial report

Budget amendment resolution

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