On Tuesday, June 12, the Orange City Council adopted the Fiscal Year 2018-2019 budget and an updated Master Fee Schedule. As a result of our City’s strong economic growth, diverse business mix, and responsible management, the City’s finances are in-balance and ready for a new fiscal year.
The $111.7 million dollar budget, which takes effect on July 1, represents a 3.6% increase from Fiscal Year 2017-2018, and reflects the solid economic performance of our City’s businesses and a still strong housing market in Orange. The new Budget includes a 5-year Capital Improvement Program with 28 new projects in addition to the 123 projects currently in different stages of planning or completion, such as the Old Towne West (Metrolink) Parking Structure and complete renewal of Shaffer Park.
The Master Fee Schedule, which sets what the City may charge the public for services, deliverables, and staff time, was updated for the first time since 2008. The Schedule update was the result of a study conducted by an outside consultant. The Consultant looked at the fees charged versus actual costs, compared them to those charged by similar cities within our local area, and proposed changes to our fee structure based on that research. The study was presented to the Council at an earlier Budget Study Session for review and input. Based on the Council’s recommendations, the adopted fee schedule lowers some fees and raises others to be consistent with inflation. The Council also wanted to avoid any significantly sharp increases to commonly charged fees. Overall, the adjustment of 19.6% still keeps the fees payed by residents and businesses among the lowest in Orange County. Estimates of any potential revenue changes arising from the new Schedule were not included in the adopted FY 18-19 Budget, but impacts, if any, will be incorporated in future budget reviews presented to the Council throughout the new Fiscal Year.
The new budget is a continuation of the ongoing conservative fiscal leadership by the Orange City Council, the hard work of City Staff, and is reflective of our commitment be good stewards of the public’s tax dollars and keep Orange “A Great Place to Live, Work, and Shop.”