Chehalis City Council

From left: Chehalis City Councilors Bob Spahr, Dennis Dawes and Daryl Lund.

The Chehalis City Council approved its 2020 proposed budget on the second and final reading at their meeting on Monday night. There were no changes made to the 2020 budget since the first reading on Nov. 12. The council opened a public hearing and there were no comments from the public on the budget. 

The city’s total revenues came to $23,961,352 and the expenditures $26,527,123. Mayor Dennis Dawes encouraged anyone who may have questions or concerns about the budget to come and talk to the city manager. 

“We’re not afraid to explain the budget,” he said. 

The general fund revenue has a proposed balance of $9,977,976, composed of 51.6 percent from sales tax. The proposed expenditure general fund amount is $10,324,818. Of that expenditure amount 56 percent is used to pay for police and fire services in the city. Property taxes compose the second largest revenue source for the general fund, 19.4 percent. 

The council voted to pass the Ad Valorem Tax in 2020, increasing the property tax by one percent which is the highest amount council is allowed to raise the tax without a vote from the people. 

The proposed 2020 budget report can be found on the City of Chehalis website at www.ci.chehalis.wa.us/sites/default/files/fileattachments/city_council/meeting/4571/agenda_packet.pdf

The city’s finance director, Chun Saul, presented the amendments to the 2019 annual budget and it was passed by the council on first reading. The estimated ending fund balance for the 2019 general fund is $773,716 which is 7.7 percent of the general fund operating revenues. The city’s policy on the general fund says to maintain a 10 percent operating reserve. Some slight budget adjustments were made in the storm and surface water fund, airport find, and firemen’s pension fund. 

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