Lavonia Passes FY 2014 Budget

By MJ Kneiser, WLHR Radio, Lavonia

The City of Lavonia starts the new year with a new budget.

Lavonia’s fiscal year began January 1 and last week, the City Council held a special called meeting to pass Lavonia’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget

The city’s FY 14 budget projects to be $2.2 million in General Fund revenue and expenses and $1.9 million in revenue and expenses in the city’s Water and Sewer Fund.

In early December, the Lavonia City Council approved the first reading of the General and Water/Sewer Fund budgets.

Last week, council members heard the second reading of both funds.

“You have had almost a whole month to review (the General and Water Fund budgets),” Lavonia City Manager Gary Fesperman said. “I have answered your questions during that time. If there are no other questions, I would ask that you approve both the General and Water Fund budgets at this time.” 

After hearing from Fesperman, Lavonia Mayor Ralph Owens called for the motion and the both budgets were passed unanimously.

From there, Fesperman went over each major fund budget.

For the SPLOST fund, Fesperman said Lavonia is expecting to receive about the same amount from FranklinCounty as last fiscal year.

“We are presently getting about $20,000 a month for our share of SPLOST funding,” he said.

Under the Cemetery Fund, Fesperman said there is a $15,000 balance carried forward from FY 13 and he is expecting another $8,000 in revenue, most of which will be used for cemetery repairs.

“We have a $15,200 balance that we carried forward in to that,” he said. “We anticipate an additional $8,000 in revenue from cemetery fees and work permits and lot sales for a total revenue of $23,200.” 

Fesperman said the plan is to use part of that money to repair roads in the city cemetery in FY14.  

Meanwhile, Fesperman said revenue from the Hotel/Motel tax fund will be used to fund the Welcome Center on I-85, as well as Lavonia’s three city parks.

He said funds will also be used for promotions and repairs to the Lavonia Cultural Center.

” Now that we don’t have Logan Davison running the Cultural Center, what we plan to do with that money is we plugged in some extra money to promote some events through the DDA. We’ve also plugged in an additional $10,000 on the contract side for those types of expenditures.” 

After going over each departmental fund, the Lavonia City Council approved all fund budgets unanimously without any discussion.