The City of Lone Tree adopted its 2022 budget with plans to return some services to pre-pandemic levels.
The $58.2 million budget approved Dec. 21 includes $57.4 million in revenue and $51.4 million in expenditures, and will contribute $6.4 million to city reserves. The ending fund balance is projected at $31.5 million.
“I’m sure the biggest sigh of relief is coming to (staff) after all the hard, hard work,” Mayor Jackie Millet said.
Slightly more than 76% of operating revenue comes from taxes and about 81% of expenditures go toward capital, police and public works.
“It’s a staggering amount,” Finance Director Ulli Nierling said.
The budget was initially drafted without assuming that a tax increase, measure 2E, would pass on the November 2021 ballot. Staff adjusted the budget proposal once voters approved the 1% sales tax hike.
Operations and maintenance will return to pre-pandemic levels and the city will unfreeze five positions, while also increasing professional development expenses.
Among public safety expenditures will be adding a police officer position to join the county’s Critical Response Team, which handles calls with a mental health component. The city will also add a record administration position, in line with Senate Bill 217.
Budget items being rolled over from the previous year include an upgrade to the civic center audio and visual system, work on Lincoln Avenue and a pickleball court project being done in partnership with South Suburban Parks and Recreation.
A majority — about 60% of the $15 million capital expense pot — is partnership funding. Councilmember Wynne Shaw said the city is fortunate to be able to offer matching funds for those projects.
Those projects include a C-470 connection to RTD stations and a citywide bicycle safety project.
“The partnership funding does not come without the city’s contribution,” Shaw said.