EVERETT — The city’s budget surplus might be $1.4 million more than originally thought.
City budget director Travis Earl on Wednesday told the City Council that more sales and business tax revenue was coming in than had been projected. That’s not only good news for city coffers, but an indication that the city’s economy is recovering, he said.
Travis was addressing the City Council during the first of three public hearings on the 2004 budget.
Last year, the city projected that it would receive $91.68 million in revenues. But several months ago, worried about decreasing tax revenues, the city revised those figures down to $89.44 million in revenues. The new estimate is $90.82 million.
If the new forecasts are correct, the city’s budget surplus could rise to $23.8 million — although Mayor Frank Anderson is proposing to use $4.8 million of the surplus to balance the budget.
The better-than-expected sales tax revenues are "still below the original budget" adopted last year, Earl said. But "they’re definitely starting to look better."
The unexpected rise in business and occupation taxes comes from several additional plane orders for the Boeing Co., which is by far the largest source of B&O tax money.
Utility, gambling and construction permit tax revenues also are up, he said.
The City Council on Wednesday voted to tentatively accept the 2004 budget, although council members said it was only a general show of support for the budget, not a final decision. The vote was 6-0, with Councilman Bob Overstreet absent.
The next public budget hearings are scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Wednesdayand 7 p.m. Nov. 19.
Reporter David Olson: 425-339-3452 or email@example.com.