Ridgefield 2019 Proposed Budget

The City of Ridgefield 2019 Proposed Budget is complete and available for review. The City’s balanced proposed budget maintains basic services and addresses community and Council goals. In addition, the budget maintains fund balance and reserve policies to ensure financial sustainability. The Proposed Budget is scheduled for City Council review during meetings in November and will be presented for the final public hearing and adoption on December 6, 2018.

The City’s budget is used as a planning and policy document estimating future City revenues and expenditures, and allocating resources to accomplish community and Council priorities. Budgeted 2019 revenues for all funds total $22.9 million and proposed expenditures for all funds total $19.7 million. The proposed budget also includes $4.36 million in one-time initiative and capital requests for new water rights, replacing aging infrastructure, new stormwater facilities, and new park and street projects.

A healthy economy and strong residential and commercial development activity are allowing the City to respond to growth and increasing demands. The addition of employees in 2019 will increase the City’s ability to maintain high service levels, enhance communication and complete much needed infrastructure improvements. The City is also proactively assuring that growth is balanced to include expanding its jobs base and attracting additional commercial development, which will assure the City’s ability to offer high quality of life, work and play options.

The City has been proactive in managing their finances since the great recession. In 2018 the City implemented a six-year budget projection for revenue and expenses. Current projections are showing City revenues will exceed expenses in each of the next six years. Nevertheless, to ensure financial stability, the City maintains fully funded reserves that meet or exceed industry standards. And, the City has implemented guidelines for both financial planning and internal financial management. As a result of these strong financial policies and conservative budget planning, the City continues to maintain its AA bond rating and a Standard & Poor’s financial management rating of “stable.”

City Council has tasked staff with becoming more efficient in daily operations as well as providing a more transparent city government that responds to citizen needs. Staff has completed several software upgrades that add efficiencies to daily tasks. And, the City has adopted a LEAN work culture to implement improvements throughout the organization that provide less expensive alternatives and process efficiencies.

A letter from Steve Stuart, City Manager, provides an overview of the budget.

 

Ridgefield City Council Appoints Jennifer Lindsay to Vacant Position

At a special meeting on October 4, 2018, the Ridgefield City Council appointed Jennifer Lindsay to fill a vacant seat on the Council. The position was vacant due to John Main’s resignation; who plans to relocate to Idaho to be closer to his children and grandchildren.

Lindsay holds a B.A. in Political Science from Portland State University, has more than 10 years of experience working with schools and local government, and has demonstrated her leadership skills on the City’s Planning Commission for the last two years. In her nine years as a resident of Ridgefield she has dedicated much of her time to volunteering with service groups such as Ridgefield Lions, the 4th of July Committee and the Booster Club. Lindsay knows the value of collaboration and problem solving for the benefit of the community and is looking forward to “serving the people of this community in a more impactful manner.” She is interested in keeping the rural feel surrounding our town as the City grows, a trail system network that creates a draw to the region and maintaining the historical, small town atmosphere of downtown.

The Council appointment was made following a rigorous selection process that required interested candidates to complete an application packet, respond to six written questions and interview with all six Councilmembers in a public meeting. At the end of the process Mayor Stose admitted that it was a very difficult decision to select one person for the Council position because all of the candidates were superior. However, “Jennifer Lindsay’s experience on the Planning Commission, community involvement and exceptional energy made her an exceptional choice. The Council is excited about what she will bring to Ridgefield.”

Lindsay will be take an oath of office at the next scheduled City Council meeting on October 11, 2018 at 6:30PM. She will be required to sit for election in 2019 to retain her position.