The Town of Strathmore's third quarter report shows a forecasted surplus of $245 thousand. This surplus is a result of several factors, like:
- Higher than expected electrical and natural gas franchise fees
- lower wage and benefit costs
- reduced debt payments
- reduction of the MSI (Municipal Sustainability Initiative) grant.
The MSI grant reduction is one of the biggest factors, as the surplus would've been $1.05 million dollars had the grant not been reduced by $812 thousand.
Up to this point, the Town is under budget for capital projects, with $8.8 million forecasted to be spent from a $9.6 million cumulative budget. The Town's Manager of Financial Reporting and Budgeting Tom Maier explained this is because some projects couldn't be done this year.
"We've had a number of projects, I think there's five in total we cancelled for various reasons, more than probably in the past that have been delayed just because of material costs and other factors not allowing those projects to move ahead this year, but hopefully we can get moving and get them completed some time in 2023 when materials and other construction items are available and costs are maybe more appropriate."
As for the projects that were done, the majority of them were on budget and those that weren't balanced themselves out.
"There's maybe 10-12 projects that had a slight overrun, but nothing significant, most of it is minor amounts. In a couple of construction projects, there were a few overruns but we had significant savings on a few other projects so we used those funds to cover that. Overall I'd say we're in good shape for the capital expenses for this year and pretty well on target, and hopefully any savings we'll just keep in reserves for future use down the road."
The operating budget was also briefly touched on, with $39.1 million in forecasted revenue to go with $38.8 million in forecasted spent. This is both slightly below budget at 98% and 97% of the budget respectively, but since they're both around the same it balanced out.
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