Beavercreek budgets $40M for 2021, about $7M less than last year

The city of Beavercreek City Hall is located at 1368 Research Park Drive. JIMNOELKER/STAFF
The city of Beavercreek City Hall is located at 1368 Research Park Drive. JIMNOELKER/STAFF

Beavercreek has budgeted to spend about $7 million less in 2021 — thanks to fewer costs of cleaning up after the 2019 Memorial Day tornadoes that the city incurred last year.

The city plans to spend about $40 million in 2021. Most of the expenses will be on personnel, said Beavercreek City Manager Pete Landrum.

“The staff’s commitment to citizens has been incredible,” Landrum said.

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Landrum said the city started the year cleaning up from the Memorial Day tornadoes and quickly had to shift into making safety changes for the COVID pandemic. The city generated $1.6 million less in revenue than planned in 2020 because of the pandemic impacting the hotel tax, the gas tax and various city-events being canceled.

The costs of cleaning up after the tornadoes caused the city to push off some capital improvement projects. In 2021, the city dedicated $1.7 million to replace equipment and $1 million to facility maintenance and improvements.

There are fewer streets projects and capital improvement projects scheduled for 2021. Half of the grant funded projects the city budgeted in 2020 are still under construction, like the Kemp Road and Dayton-Xenia Road projects. About 40% of the entire budget will be spent on street maintenance and capital funds, with funds from grants included in the total to be spent, Landrum said.

Last year, the city did about $11 million worth of street improvement projects. Of that, $6.8 million was funded by federal or state grants. In 2021, the city has budgeted for about $5 million in street improvement projects. About 24% of that will be funded by grants.

Landrum said, to his knowledge, most other cities don’t get that much grant funding. Beavercreek gets a lot of grants because the city has to support a large volume of traffic on its roads. The city has done many road-widening projects in recent years.

“These used to be two lane roads that just had ditches beside them,” Landrum said. “They’re going from that to heavily traveled thoroughfares.”

Landrum said since about 75% of the workforce comes into the city from other areas and about that same amount leaves the city to work. That helps the city when trying to secure grant funding.

“We’re able to prove that we’re helping the region and helping people get to jobs and so forth,” he said.

Landrum said the city does not have enough funds for regular road maintenance.

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Landrum said thanks in part to the coronavirus pandemic, many of the streets projects the city started in 2020 came in under budget. This saved the city about $1 million.

Senior center staff were laid off for about eight weeks. The five food and beverage staff at the golf course were permanently laid off. The Beavercreek golf course no longer offers food, people who rent the space can use an approved catering business, Landrum said.

Beavercreek still has a hiring freeze on city staff. Landrum said open positions are being filled on a case by case basis.

The city has budgeted 2021 revenue at $37 million. Property taxes represent almost 60% of the city’s budgeted revenue for 2021.

Landrum said in 2021 and beyond he is looking forward to using a software the city already has in a more comprehensive way. Dude Solutions, a computer system that the city started using in 2018, can track work orders and use it to assess when to replace roads, curbs and various city-owned buildings. Eventually the city will need staff to operate and analyze data from the software, Landrum said.

Landrum said with the city’s 1%-earned income tax failing in November, residents have said they want to see exactly how money is being spent and see the backlog of infrastructure projects the city says the income tax is needed to address.

The city manager compared Beavercreek to a shed that was hastily built without a plan because of how quickly the city has grown. It is now like a house and it needs a “blue print,” Landrum said.

Beavercreek city council approved the 2021 budget on Monday.

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