The 2020 proposed budget includes a modest increase in the tax levy of 7.6% which is a 3.017% tax increase on the average home. This equals a $62 increase on the average home in the City Sun Prairie, compared to 2019’s tax increase of $74 on the average home.
The City of Sun Prairie employs three primary financial tools to make informed financial decisions. The tools are the Five‐Year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), the Five‐Year Financial Management Plan (FMP), and the Annual City Budget.
The last phase of budget development is the operating budget. Departments’ have three tasks:
- complete the cost to continue budget for current operation service levels i
- identify goals and initiatives for the coming year (including those identified in the FMP)
- project current year end expenditures
The Finance department forecasts revenues and expenditures in July with an update in August following the release of the State of Wisconsin’s Equalized Property Values on August 15th. The City Council holds several work sessions to provide staff with guidelines for developing the annual City budget.
The Finance department and other city departments work in conjunction to produce a projection of anticipated revenues in the coming fiscal year. Debt payments and operating costs as determined in the CIP are incorporated into the annual budget. The Mayor and City Administrator review departmental budget requests and determine which goals and initiatives will be included in the Recommended Budget. The Recommended Budget and the Budget approved by Council must be in balance; projected general fund expenses must be equal to or less than budgeted general fund expenditures.
The Mayor presents the Recommended Budget to the City Council on or before October 20, in accordance with state statute. The proposed budget is simultaneously made available to the public and the Council. The public can view a printed copy at the City Clerk’s office or the Sun Prairie Library. The public can also view and download the document from the city’s website. The City Council reviews the proposed budget and makes desired modifications.
A public hearing provides residents with the opportunity to present input concerning the budget. The City Council must approve the final budget by a three‐fourths supermajority vote on or before December 8, per state statute. Once the budget is finalized, the tax levy rate is calculated and property tax bill distribution begins. The budget takes effect January 1 of each year.