Maggie adopts 2014-15 budget
The Maggie Valley Board of Aldermen adopted the official 2014-15 budget on June 18.
The total budget is $2,239,310, which includes administration, public works, police, recreation, debt service, contingency, Powell Bill and Board of Alderman.
The board held several workshops to discuss the budget, and members agreed the process was much smoother this year thanks to Town Manager Nathan Clark’s clear presentation and recommendations. Major issues this year were the festival grounds budget, sewer impact fees, water and sewer rates, employee raises and health care costs.
The town ended up saving money in the festival grounds budget by not replacing the festival grounds director position and increasing the fees for renting the grounds. A total of $116,278 is budgeted for the grounds compared to the proposed amount of about $130,000.
The original proposed budget called for a 1.5 percent cost-of-living raise and a 1.5 percent merit raise for town employees. After further discussions, the board removed the 1.5 percent merit raise. The $12,750 budgeted for the merit raises was moved to contingency.
The proposed budget recommended changing the town’s sewer impact fees to 2006-07 levels of $7.71 per gallon for all customers. However, the board decided to only increase the impact fee to $6 per gallon across the board — $1 more per gallon than the 2013-14 budget.
Worried about having enough funds in the future to take care of the wastewater treatment plant, the board agreed to change the user fees. The minimum rates will remain the same but the “over the minimum” rate will be increased by 50 cents.
The change will result in “in-town” customers paying $4 per 1,000 gallons over the minimum and “out-of-town” customers paying $8 per 1,000 gallons over the minimum.
The town also faced increased insurance costs because of the Affordable Health Care Act. Facing a 26 percent increase with its current plan, the board chose to change providers. The town is going with a plan from Coventry Health Care, which increases the town’s cost by about 6 percent. Employees who are tobacco users must enroll in a tobacco secession program or face a 20 percent employee-paid surcharge under this plan.
To see the complete budget, visit www.townofmaggievalley.com.
Maggie Valley Budget at a glance
Board of Aldermen $60,271
Public Works $476,706
Debt Service $171,948
Powell Bill $33,475